NSW bushfires: Important health and safety information

Call the Bush Fire Information Line on 1800 679 737 or visit the www.rfs.nsw.gov.au or the latest details on the NSW bushfire crisis.

Catastrophic fire conditions are now expected in the Greater Sydney, Greater Hunter and Illawarra Shoalhaven areas tomorrow, Tuesday 12 November. These conditions are very dangerous.

People with any breathing issues, lung conditions or those who are particularly vulnerable can be the first to feel the effects of smoke which may aggravate their existing condition. Even healthy adults and children can be impacted by the effects of heavy smoke which can result in lung irritation.

These conditions can have a serious impact on your health and it is important to remember that our bodies have to work extra hard to cope or cool down.

Ensure you stay hydrated and pay particular attention to any symptoms of heat related illness, such as dizziness, headaches, racing pulse or nausea.

Be aware of potential hazards such as embers, falling debris and reduced visibility.

Some important health tips ahead of tomorrow’s conditions:

  • If you’re preparing to leave your home, make sure you pack your medications, including those in the fridge.
  • Smoke can cause health problems, particularly for people with pre-existing lung and heart conditions like asthma, emphysema, angina or heart failure.
  • Avoid outdoor physical activity if it’s smoky, particularly if you have a pre-existing condition like asthma.
  • People with asthma should follow their asthma management plans and keep your reliever medication close to hand.
  • If your reliever medication has run out or is passed its use-by date, you can buy a new one from the pharmacy without a prescription
  • You can reduce exposure to smoke by staying indoors with the doors and windows shut. Air conditioning can help to filter out smoke that gets into your house

NSW Ambulance is always available to help – never be afraid to call Triple Zero (000).

If you are in the path of a fire, your life will be at risk. Avoid bushland areas. Safer locations may include large centres, such as towns or cities well away from bushland areas. If you are unable to leave, identify a safer location in case a fire starts. This may include a Neighbourhood Safer Place.

Stay up to date on bushfires in your area by listening to local radio, through the RFS website, through social media and the Fires Near Me NSW app.

Please take care and continue to check the fire, weather, traffic and school closure information using the websites listed below:

For tips on how to stay safe in hot weather, visit https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/beattheheat/Pages/default.aspx