You can find some easy ways to prepare yourself below and get reliable information from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and New Zealand WeatherWatch.

Storm preparation

If you know a storm is on its way, there are a few simple things you should do to protect yourself and your property. The State Emergency Service advises that you should:

  • Move vehicles under cover or away from trees.

  • Secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony.

  • Keep at least 8 metres away from fallen power lines or objects that may be energised, such as fences.

  • Trees that have been damaged by fire are likely to be more unstable and more likely to fall.

  • Report fallen power lines to either Ausgrid (131 388), Endeavour Energy (131 003), Essential Energy (132 080) or Evoenergy (131 093) as shown on your power bill.

  • Stay vigilant and monitor conditions. Note that the landscape may have changed following bushfires.

  • For emergency help in floods and storms in Australia, ring your local SES Unit on 132 500. In New Zealand, contact your local civil defence unit, which is responsible for help during national disasters including severe weather events.

Staying safe when a storm hits

Storms can occur year-round and can often crop up with little warning. Below are some of the key tips for staying safe when a thunderstorm hits. According to the BOM:

  • If you're swimming or surfing, leave the water immediately

  • Seek shelter in a 'hard-top' (metal-bodied) vehicle or solid building

  • Stay inside

  • Shelter away from windows, doors and skylights

  • Avoid sheltering under trees. If you are in an open area, crouch in a hollow (alone with your feet together) and avoid being the highest object in the vicinity

  • If powerlines are damaged by the storm, stay far away from them.

  • Stay familiar with the updates from BOM and WeatherWatch which give regular updates on weather conditions

  • Call 000 (AUS) or 111 (NZ) if your life is in danger. For non-life-threatening storm damage, call the SES on 132 500 in Australia or your local civil defence unit in New Zealand

If you're caught outside in a bad storm, try not to panic. Sonder members can "swipe for help" for the best course of action and immediate assistance.

Quick Links:

BOM Twitter

BOM Severe Weather Knowledge Centre

BOM Current Weather Warnings

NZ Weather Warnings Centre

If you have any questions or need extra support, we're here to help you anytime, in any language. Simply start a chat with us via the home screen of the Sonder app.

All content is created and published for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice.

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