Preparing for emergencies

Preparing for an emergency can minimise the impacts on you, your family and community.

Although Adelaide is a relatively safe city, it is not immune to potential emergencies. We all need to do our part to prepare ourselves and family. Research suggests that communities that prepare come through emergencies far stronger than those that don’t.

It is important to know what to do before, during and after an emergency.

Before - prepare

The three simple actions everyone can take to prepare for emergencies are connect, plan, and make a kit.

  1. Connect
    Talk with the people you know and trust about helping you in an emergency. This could include family, neighbours and friends. Neighbours are usually the first to help each other because they live close by. When connecting and making your emergency plan don’t forget to consider older people, children and pets who may need more support.

    Get connected
  2. Plan
    Developing an emergency plan for you and your household will help you think through what you will do during and immediately following an emergency. You may also want to consider who you might stay with if you couldn’t stay in your home. The Australian Red Cross RediPlan is a useful template for developing an emergency plan. 

    Download RediPlan
  3. Make a kit
    Following an emergency there is likely to be disruption to essential services including water supply and electricity. Having an emergency kit for your household may help you be self-sufficient until services are restored.

    Emergency kit checklist

During – stay safe

Call the relevant emergency service if you need assistance. You can be taking steps to look after yourself and those around you while emergency service agencies will be coordinating their response to an emergency.

During an emergency and in the lead up to a hazard such as a heatwave, the safest thing to do is follow the instructions of emergency service organisations such as SA Police, Metropolitan Fire Service and State Emergency Service.

After – recovery

The impacts on individuals and communities can be felt long after the emergency has passed. Depending on the severity and type of emergency, recovery may take anywhere from days to years. Neighbours and communities can be a good source of support in the aftermath of an emergency.


If you want to prepare for disasters, have experienced a disaster or are recovering from a disaster, Red Cross has a host of useful emergency management resources that can help.