Protect your home against summer bushfires

Protect Your Home Against Summer Bushfires

Bushfires are unforgiving, uncontrollable, raging forces of nature that Australians face each and every year. While they are not always preventable and you and your family’s safety should always come first, there are some simple and effective ways to minimise damage from bushfires.

Smoke Detectors Save Lives

These essential home safety devices are compulsory in most states of Australia, yet so many people either don’t have them installed in important areas of the home or they don’t have them in the house at all.  And remember; there’s no point having smoke detectors if they are not working. So regularly test your smoke detectors and replace the batteries when necessary.

Home Maintenance is Essential

During autumn and winter, debris can easily clog up in gutters and drains – come summer, this same debris can dry up and become very easy to ignite.  If you can afford it, there are some great gutter protection systems available – however it’s still vital to keep an eye on gutters and your roof for any build up that has managed to gather.

You wouldn’t think it, but an untidy back and front yard can be dangerous. Discarded wood, building supplies, dry grass clippings and rubbish can easily set alight in the midst of a bushfire.  Keep paths clear and rubbish secured in the appropriate vessels to ensure your back and front yards are safe and sound.

Plan Ahead

One thing that could very well save you and your family’s life is preparedness.  When it comes to a bushfire, preparedness comes in the form of an evacuation plan and bushfire kit.  Make sure you go over it before the start of summer each year so everyone is clear on their responsibilities.  As an added precaution, talk to your local council – they will be able to tell you which areas the neighbourhood can meet in should a major fire occur.

Many fire safety groups (like the CFA) now offer alerts through various media outlets so that you can be kept up to date about fires, safety and any advice that should be taken.

Ideally, a bushfire kit should have an AM/FM radio, waterproof torch (and spare batteries), a first aid kit, blankets and bottled water.

Remove the Financial Burden

Finally, if your home does succumb to a bushfire, the financial burden of rebuilding your family’s lives can be lifted by taking out comprehensive home and contents insurance.  The cover will help you to rebuild your home and furnish it with the comforts you had before the fire came.  Always be sure to check your policy to ensure you are covered for both home and contents insurance, not just one or the other.

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