This article is a guide to what to do before, during and after cyclones. If you would like to learn more about cyclones and what they are, read this article.
BEFORE A CYCLONE:
- Check your roof for loose tiles as they could fall and hurt you.
- Check whether any branches are hanging over your house. They could fall and hurt you or damage the building
- If you have time, clear the gutters of leaves and debris. This will allow water to flow out more effectively.
- Have a plan for where you will leave any animals you might own.
DURING A CYCLONE:
- Tell your neighbours if you hear a cyclone warning and let friends and family know where you are.
- Turn off all electricity, gas and water; unplug all electrical appliances.
- Bring your family to strongest part of house.
- If you have access, listen to a radio and/or check social media for any updates.
- Stay calm.
IF AN EVACUATION IS ORDERED:
- Act immediately, follow directions and seek shelter.
- If you have time, leave any animals in a safe indoor place with food and water. Always prioritise yourself and your family first.
- If you are driving, stay inside the car but stop driving and park immediately.
- If you can contact a local radio station or write on social media to tell others what you can see (if you are certain that you are safe). This is so that others can be helped by reliable first hand experience.
AFTER A CYCLONE:
- Remain indoors until the cyclone is over.
- Check on friends and family if it is safe to do so.
- Boil your water so that it is purer before drinking, due to the risk of cholera. You can read more about that in this article.
- Stay away from powerlines (risk of electrocution), fallen trees (as you may hurt yourself) and flood water (cholera article).
In the future, we can improve services to areas affected by cyclones by increasing access to communication. This involves ensuring that people can access social media and radios.
Countries at risk should also invest in flooding barriers and effective drainage systems to allow water to clear away more quickly.