Queensland urges producers to prepare for seasonal natural disasters
Queensland Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner has urged the state’s primary producers to prepare for natural disasters, to help ensure the safety of family, workers and animals. With La Niña underway, Furner predicts that there is an increased chance of above-average rainfall across most of Queensland in the coming months. “According to the Bureau of Meteorology, there is a potential for an above-average number of tropical cyclones expected this season and typically, in La Niña years, the first cyclone occurs earlier than normal around mid-December,” Furner said.
Queensland has already been affected by hailstorms and heavy rainfall over spring, with more tropical lows likely to lead to the increasing possibility of significant rainfall in areas of the state. “We’ve seen how catastrophic monsoonal floods across the north-west, bushfires and severe tropical cyclones and hailstorms heavily impact Queensland’s agriculture industry so I encourage all agribusinesses to get ready now,” Furner said.
The Queensland Government has provided specially tailored natural disaster guides to help producers protect their property, business, livestock and crops. The guides provide a range of tips for preparing for natural disasters, including photographing assets in their pre-disaster condition, ensuring everyone on the property is familiar with a plan to get to safety in the event of a flood, and ensuring livestock have access to higher ground. The guides can be accessed on the Business Queensland website, by searching for ‘natural disasters’ and ‘preparing animals for natural disasters’.
The website also provides a range of resources and links to help small businesses and primary producers recover after a natural disaster. Small business owners can access disaster recovery information and advice, with guides for developing a recovery plan, and disaster support and assistance for tourism businesses. The Queensland Government has also provided guidelines for bushfire relief, Northern Queensland flood relief, rural disaster recovery, emergency alerts and contacts, and pandemic risk management for businesses.
Furner also advised pet owners not to forget about family pets in household or farm emergency plans, urging pet owners to keep emergency phone numbers handy for local council, veterinarian, animal welfare agency, and pet and advisory services. Further, Furner urged pet owners to ensure their pets can be properly identified if they escape. “If moving pets to safety, make sure you take plenty of food, bowls, a leash and toilet litter or old newspapers,” Furner said. “If they are to be left at home, secure them in a confined space, preferably inside and under cover, and provide access to water.” Furner advised Queenslanders to contact their local councils for further information about cyclone preparations, such as local evacuation routes and public shelter arrangements.
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