Are you prepared?

Graphic with the words


Nillumbik has seen floods, fires, storms, accidents and other emergencies.

Council works with government, agencies and our community to minimise the impact of all emergencies in Nillumbik.

It is your responsibility to prepare for an emergency to minimise risk to life and property. This information will help you plan and prepare.

Creating a plan

During an emergency, there will be many questions to answer and decisions to make. Where are your family photos? Should you take the dog? Where is your medication? How will you get the horses out?

An emergency situation will raise your levels of stress and adrenaline, which could lead to panic - potentially putting you and your family in more danger.

  • Consider the important decisions and writing these down before you are faced with an emergency - this will avoid regrets later.
  • After you have created your plan, make sure the people around you understand the plan and know their role in an emergency. This might even include people outside of your household such as your neighbours and/or local community group.


Information to help you plan

Resources for creating a plan

Take a look at some of the resources and templates below. Choose one that's right for you or use them to create your own plan.

Supporting people with additional needs

People with disability or those who are frail due to age may have complex support needs. Here are some resources to help people with additional needs to prepare for an emergency:

The P-CEP toolkit

The Person-Centred Emergency Planning toolkit helps people with disability to start planning for an emergency. 

Rediplan - Easy English version

An Easy English version of the Red Cross Rediplan booklet.

E-learning for workers and carers

The CFA has created online learning modules for people who work, travel or care for people in high bushfire areas

Auslan resources

The DeafNav website has information in Auslan about preparing for emergencies, as well as what to do during and after emergencies.

Planning for pets and animals

Do you have pets or other animals? Make sure to plan for them as well. The resources below will help you develop a plan with your animals in mind.

Planning for emergencies as a business owner

If you are a business owner you may have staff or customers to consider when a bushfire, flood or storm hits.

View the information below to get started thinking about protecting your business.



Emergency Preparedness - printable booklet

This booklet is the result of collaborative efforts of councils in the Eastern Metro Councils Emergency Management Partnership.

Please note this document is best viewed in "full screen" mode (by clicking the square icon in the bottom right).

You can print a copy by clicking the "print" icon in the bottom right.


Preparing yourself mentally

You may have a plan on how to save your home and yourself in an emergency, but have you considered how an emergency might affect the mental health of you and your family?

When it comes to mental health, the events that occur after an emergency can be just as damaging as what happens during an emergency.

If you have been through an emergency event, delaying getting help or talking about your experiences is more likely to result in a slower recovery or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The actual emergency event may not be what causes the greatest impact to mental health. Often, it's the disruption in day-to-day life that people struggle to cope with.

The links below provide guides and resources to help you learn how disasters can impact mental health and how you can support yourself and people close to you.


Preparing your property

It is critical to consider how you will prepare your property ahead of an emergency.

For disposal of grass, leaves, bark and twigs Council has several options that may help you:

See further information about:


Check your insurance

Recovering from an emergency when you are not insured or underinsured can make a difficult situation even more difficult.

Grants and financial assistance may be available as a result of a declared emergency, but will not be enough to rebuild a home and replace contents and assets.

Conduct an annual insurance check up

Make sure to check your policy every year to ensure that your policy provides you with enough cover to rebuild to a standard that you are comfortable with.

Underinsuring is a common problem. It might mean home owners need to borrow extra money to rebuild, or compromise on the type of home they want such as size or features.

A bushfire, flood or other emergency could destroy driveways, retaining walls, gardens, sheds, fencing, swimming pools and more. Call your insurance broker or insurance company to discuss your policy limits and coverage.

Did you know that floods cause more damage than any other natural disaster in Australia? Many policies do not automatically include flood cover so make sure you know what your policy includes.

If you need to rebuild your home after an emergency, building costs may be increased if you are in a bushfire-prone area. To find out if this might affect you, contact the Planning Department at Nillumbik Shire Council or enter your address into the VicPlan website (select 'Layers' and then 'Bushfire').

Know what your policy covers

Will your policy cover accommodation, removal of debris or demolition costs? These details matter. Understand if you have a replacement cost policy that pays to replace all your items at current market price or an actual cash value policy that takes depreciation into account and pays less for aged items.

Make a home inventory

Rebuilding or replacing lost items is easier if you have an accurate home inventory.

To document the contents of your home before an emergency occurs:

  • Use your smartphone to video/photograph your belongings
  • Take a walk and video the outside of your property as well, fences, retaining walls, shed, garages and their contents
  • Keep your inventory and photos at another location to your home or store this information online

More information

Find out more at the Understand Insurance website.