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How to Prepare for the Return of La Nina

In this recent article by The Courier Mail, Theralux Director Eddie Lloyd shares his tips on how to prepare your pool for the return of La Nina.

Rain and possible storms are forecast....as the first La Nina weather event in 10 years starts to settle in for the season.

While there are 760 State Emergency Service (SES) volunteers in the Brisbane region ready to help, responders are urging anyone with a home, whether you rent or own, to get ready for storm season.

“While it’s very dry now, things can quickly turn with a La Nina, so don’t be caught out. Storms can happen out of nothing,” State Emergency Service local controller Lowry Boyd said.

On the afternoon of November 27, 2014, Mr Boyd was on the 15th floor of Brisbane Square in the city and the storm on the radar looked normal but out the window he could see clouds out Jimboomba way coming together to form a mega cell which tore through the city during peak hour. It lasted half an hour, damaged the roofs of 2000 homes and caused $1.1 billion worth of damage.

“The SES in Brisbane received 3500 jobs that afternoon and the bulk were from smashed windows, roof tiles or smashed sky lights, and then tree damage on roofs and properties, and then water getting in,” he said.

Mr Boyd lives on Bribie Island and after the storm he went home to check the condition of his own skylight. “It was very brittle with the UV effects, you could have poked your finger through it. So I got some tape (gaffer tape or thick plastic) and taped it up and made arrangements to get it replaced and the supplier said they’re really only good for 7-9 years.” Mr Boyd recommends checking the condition of skylights as well as gutters, overhanging branches and trees before heavy rains come.

While pool experts recommend keeping water levels from getting too high, and checking filters regularly as rain brings its own contaminants. "Just because it’s a La Nina, doesn’t mean no bushfires, so if you’re in a bushfire prone area, have a survival plan ready and a plan for your animals too.”

SES depots in Darra, Morningside, Newmarket and Zillmere have 40,000 sandbags ready to be picked up by local residents in preparation for storm season and after the rains Mr Boyd said the sand makes a great lawn treatment.

“Just sprinkle it over the lawn when you’re done and put the bag in the bin,” he said. But in combination with sandbags, Mr Boyd advises residents to clear gutters, drains and garden cuttings that could inhibit the flow of water around the home.

“People say, ‘I’ve done that’, but it doesn’t take too many leaves to block up your gutter and 99 per cent of flooding in the home comes from water flowing over gutters,” he said. “Do some preventive maintenance now, (if you wait till) the other side of Christmas there’s the possibility of cyclones or a tropical low dumping hundreds of millimetres of water so you don’t want to be doing that in the rain.

“And there’s plenty of tradies out there needing work. Get them in there and help kickstart the economy.”

Pool Rules

1. Avoid water levels in the pool from getting too high to keep proper skimming action, and to avoid contamination from water washing in from the pool deck/surrounds.

2. Check and clean the filter and pump weekly as rain brings contaminants with it. Operate the filtration system for at least six to eight hours per day and run a quick, natural filter cleaner through the filter prior to summer.

3. Check the water balancing parameters/water chemistry of the pool every two days and adjust accordingly, particularly after a period of heavy use, a very hot day or following heavy rain.

4. Regular maintenance should include doses of algaecides and phosphate removers to help keep the pool healthy and clear.

5. Vacuum and scoop the pool regularly to remove any debris washed into the pool by wind or rain.

6. Book a specialist to come give your pool a check-up before and after heavy-use time or heavy rain. Or take a sample from elbow-deep and take it to your local pool store for testing.

7. Secure toys, furniture or equipment before a storm.

(Theralux Director, Eddie Lloyd)

Be Prepared

• The Queensland Government has an extensive list of tips to get ready for storm season at getready.qld.gov.au.

• An interactive Flood Awareness Map for Brisbane and a free FloodWise Property Report for your home can be found on the Brisbane City Council website at floodinformation.brisbane. qld.gov.au/fio

• You can sign up for early warning alerts on your mobile phone at: brisbane.qld.gov.au/beprepared

• If your property has storm or flood damage, contact the SES on 132 500, but if it is a life-threatening emergency, phone 000.

Source: Courier Mail, 24.10.20

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2020.12.16
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