Before the cyclone season
Ø Check if your house, community halls, school buildings and government offices have been built to cyclone standards and in good condition, especially the roofs and walls if they are secured.
Ø Trim tree tops and branches well clear of your houses.
Ø Fit shutters, or at least metal screens, to all glass areas.
Ø Clear your property of loose material that could blow about and possibly cause injury or damage during extreme winds.
Ø In case of a storm surge/tide warning, or other flooding, know your nearest safe high ground and the safest access route to it.
Ø Prepare an emergency kit containing:
v A portable battery radio, torch and spare batteries;
v Water containers, dried or canned food and a can opener;
v Matches, fuel lamp, portable stove, cooking gear, eating utensils; and
v A first aid kit and manual, masking tape for windows and waterproof bags.
Ø Keep a list of emergency phone numbers on display.
Ø Check neighbours, especially if recent arrivals, to make sure they are prepared.
When cyclone information is issued
Ø Re-check your property for any loose material and tie down or fill with water all large, relatively light items such as rubbish bins.
Ø Fill vehicles' fuel tanks. Check your emergency kit and fill water containers.
Ø Ensure household members know which the strongest part of the house is and what to do in the event of a cyclone warning or an evacuation.
Ø Tune to your local radio/TV for further information and warnings.
Ø Check that neighbours are aware of the situation and are preparing.
When cyclone warning is issued
Ø If requested by local authorities, leave work places, collect children from school or childcare centre and go home.
Ø Park vehicles under solid shelter.
Ø Put wooden or plastic outdoor furniture in your pool or inside with other loose items.
Ø Close shutters or board-up or heavily tape all windows. Draw curtains and lock doors.
Ø Pack an evacuation kit of warm clothes, essential medications, baby formula, nappies, valuables, important papers, photos and mementos in waterproof bags to be taken with your emergency kit. Large/heavy valuables could be protected in a strong cupboard.
Ø Remain indoors. Stay tuned to your local radio/TV for further information from the Meteorological Department.
Ø Disconnect all electrical appliances. Listen to your battery or portable radio for warning updates.
Ø Stay inside and shelter (well clear of windows) in the strongest part of the building, i.e. bathroom. Keep evacuation and emergency kits with you.
Ø If the building starts to break up, protect yourself with mattresses, rugs or blankets under a strong table or bench or hold onto a solid fixture, e.g. a water pipe.
Ø Beware the calm 'eye'. If the wind drops, don't assume the cyclone is over; violent winds will soon resume from another direction. Wait for the official 'all clear'.
Ø If driving, stop (handbrake on and in gear) - but well away from the sea and clear of trees, power lines and streams. Stay in the vehicle.
After the cyclone
Ø Do not go outside until told to do so by the Meteorological office or the Disaster Management Office.
Ø Check for gas leaks. Don't use electric appliances if wet.
Ø Listen to local radio/TV for official warnings and advice.
Ø If you have to evacuate, or did so earlier, don't return until advised.
Ø Beware of damaged power lines, buildings, trees, and don't enter floodwaters.
Ø Pay attention to all warnings and don't go sightseeing. Check/help neighbours instead.