Floods

Floods

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  • Be careful when you enter properties after floods. Floods leave behind many hazards.
  • Check with local emergency services whether you can safely return home.

Risks from contaminated floodwaters and flood debris

  • Avoid contact with floodwaters.
  • Floodwater and debris may contain waste, sewage and other hazards.
  • Dirty water, mud and silt from floods can contain germs that can cause illnesses, including gastro and skin infections.
  • Wash any part of your body exposed to floodwater, mud or silt.
  • Wear protective clothing, footwear and equipment if you are cleaning up in flood-affected areas.
  • Damaged building materials may contain asbestos. If you suspect this, get advice from your Council before proceeding.
  • Stay out of recreational water sites for at least three days after heavy rain – or for longer after floods.

Food Safety

  • If you’ve been in contact with floodwaters, wash your hands and change dirty clothing before preparing or eating food.
  • Throw out any food that’s been in floodwater unless it was secure in a waterproof tin or bottle.
  • Throw out perishable refrigerated food if the power has been off for more than a day.
  • If frozen food thaws, either cook it immediately and eat it or store it safely, or throw it out.
  • If you’re not sure if food is safe, throw it out.

Boil Water Alerts

  • If your drinking water is subject to a ‘Boil Water Alert’ and you can’t boil water because of a power failure, then don’t drink the water. Use a different source like bottled water.
  • If you can boil your water, consider boiling and storing enough to last through a power outage.
  • If your drinking water is not subject to a ‘Boil Water Alert’ but you notice it is unusually discoloured, boil it before drinking.
  • TasWater provides information on all current boil water alerts, including maps, at www.taswater.com.au

Temporary Boil Water Alerts due to flooding are in place for:

  • Colebrook

Treating infections

  • If you get a cut or scratch while in a flood-affected area, clean it, cover it, and protect it from further contamination.
  • Get medical attention if an injury is severe or painful or red and swollen, or if you develop a fever.
  • Keep your tetanus immunisation up-to-date.

General Safety Messages

  • Keep clear of floodwaters, drains and culverts.
  • Don’t drive, walk, swim or cycle through floodwaters.
  • Mud makes roads, paths and floors slippery – take extra care to avoid falls.
  • Be prepared for power cuts.
  • Don’t use fuel-powered equipment like generators or pumps in enclosed spaces.
  • Don’t use flooded gas or electrical appliances until they’ve been checked for safety.
  • Stay away from beaches during large swells and high winds.
  • Beware of damaged trees.
  • Keep clear of fallen power lines and nearby water.
  • Check on family and neighbours, and supervise children closely.
  • Ensure your drains and gutters are free of debris and running freely before severe weather.
  • Drive to the conditions. Don’t drive in the wet unless you need to.
  • Listen to ABC local radio or check www.ses.tas.gov.au for updates.
  • For road closures check www.police.tas.gov.au/community-alerts

Tasmanian Government emergency information on floods is at TasALERT www.tasalert.com

For flood and emergency help contact SES on 132 500

June 2016