Emergencies

Triple Zero

Calling 000 is the quickest way to get the right emergency service to help you. You can contact Police, Fire or Ambulance in life threatening or emergency situations.

Assess the situation

  • Is someone seriously injured or in need of urgent medical help?
  • Is your life or property being threatened?
  • Have you just witnessed a serious accident or crime?

If you answered YES call 000.

Make your call

  • Stay calm and call 000 from a safe place
  • When your call is answered you will be asked if you need Police, Fire or Ambulance
  • If requested by the operator, state your town and location
  • Your call will be directed to the service you asked for
  • When connected to the emergency service, stay on the line, speak clearly and answer the questions
  • Don't hang up until the operator tells you to do so.

Provide location information

  • You will be asked where you are
  • Try to provide street number, street name, nearest cross street and the area
  • In rural areas give the full address and distances from landmarks and roads as well as the property name
  • If you are calling from a mobile or satellite phone, the operator may ask you for other location information
  • If you make a call while travelling, state the direction you are travelling and the last motorway exit or town you passed
  • The operator may ask you to wait at a pre-arranged meeting point to help emergency services locate the incident.

Accessibility and assistance

Emergency services are available for anyone who does not have English as their first language or customers who are hearing impaired or mute.

Satellite phone services and 000

All Australian satellite phone operators provide access to 000. If your provider operates via another country, you may not be able to access 000. Check with your satellite phone provider if you are unsure whether you can contact 000 from your satellite phone. Please do not call 000 to test.

Tips

  • Keep the 000 number beside phones at home and work.
  • Teach children and overseas visitors that the emergency number to call in Australia is 000.
  • Teach children when and how to use 000 by playing the Kids' Challenge.

Evacuations

Evacuation happens when you move to a safer location and then return home.

We undertake an evacuation to ensure that you are safe and free from the risk of death, injury or harm.

In South Australia the Country Fire Service and the Metropolitan Fire Service have the power to direct an evacuation under the South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Act 2005.

The South Australia Police and other emergency services have the power to evacuate under the Emergency Management Act 2004.

The agency responsible for managing the incident will only make a decision to evacuate if there is time and the resources to manage an evacuation safely.

South Australia's Police and Emergency Services prefer not to evacuate during a fast moving bushfire unless there is plenty of time and resources to manage an evacuation.

Types

There are different types of evacuations:

  • Immediate evacuation - when a sudden hazard forces you to leave immediately, with little or no warning and limited preparation time. A decision to do this should always be based on a risk assessment that determines:
    1. the threat to life or injury is likely
    2. staying is a greater risk than leaving
    3. you can leave relatively safely
  • Pre-warned evacuation - follows reliable information that prompts a decision to undertake a controlled and managed evacuation. We prefer this option.
  • Self-evacuation - when you, your family or a community group decide to move away from an area that may be or has been impacted by an emergency.

Decisions

The State's Emergency Management Agencies prefer that:

  • you decide whether to stay or leave before you are threatened by an emergency,
  • we only make the decision to evacuate or recommend evacuation when it is evident that loss of life or injury is imminent and almost certain,
  • you evacuate as early as possible, late evacuations may add to the risk of staying,
  • if you evacuate you return to your properties as early as practical.

Road closures during emergencies

Access Tiers and Risk Information

Control Agency may authorise access for specific access and impose restrictions.

Tier 1

Emergency Services Only

High Risk Level

Designated area/road likely to be impacted by fire

Access in/out of area blocked and/or danger of hazardous trees etc

Access

Emergency Services

Other services authorised by the Control Agency

Any person authorised by the Control Agency

Identification or Authorisation

Emergency Service vehicles

Approved Farm Fire Units

Tier 2

Essential Services Assessment and restoration activities, Media with escort

Significant Risk Level

Main hazard past/lessened

Identification of works required to reduce risk(s)

PPE required

Secondary hazards:

  • falling/fallen trees
  • fallen power lines

Access

As per Tier 1

Essential Services (includes Councils, DPTI, SA Power Networks, Biosecurity SA, PIRSA) to conduct assessment and start restoration activities

Media with escort

Identification or Authorisation

As per Tier 1

Agency/organisation ID

CFS Media Accreditation ID plus appropriate PPE/PPC

Tier 3

Relief/Recovery Services ID

Bona fide residents*, Media

Moderate Risk Level

Secondary hazards are being reduced but still evident

Caution required

Access

Bona fide residents* and/or land owner returning to protect/defend property/stock

Media

Relief/Recovery services ID

Identification or Authorisation

Bona fide resident*

CFS Media Accreditation ID

Relief/Recovery Services ID

Tier 4

Bona fide residents*, Relief/Recovery Services, Media

Low Risk Level

Secondary hazards largely reduced

Mopping up actions continuing

Caution required

Access

Bona fide residents* returning to home/property

Relief/Recovery personnel

Aid agencies

Identification or Authorisation

Bona fide resident*

Relief/Recovery Services ID

Tier 5

Road open

Insignificant Risk Level

Control Agency satisfied that road related issues no longer pose a threat to road users

Access

Open to all

Identification or Authorisation

Not applicable

* Bona fide resident and/or landowner must show identification to prove they live in the area and understand that they enter at their own risk. You will need to provide a driver's licence or similar photo ID, or a rates notice with your address before you can enter an affected area.

FAQs

You can find information about road closures through social and other media sources, government websites and community meetings.

Emergency information is available at:

The Control Agency may develop and release maps showing the status of roads affected by the emergency. Roads marked:

Tier 1

Red are closed due to safety issues

Tier 2

Orange indicate access is being assessed and may be open to access

Tier 3

Yellow indicate access is allowed for approved access

Tier 4

Green are open to access (caution may be required while travelling these roads, speed and other restrictions may apply)

Tier 5

Without colour are open with no restrictions on access

We close roads when there are risks to the community such as:

  • dangerous trees which may have been burnt or partially burnt that may be unstable
  • power lines that have been brought down or may be brought down, these should be considered live
  • road conditions
  • potential for the fire to flare up
  • high water across the road
  • unstable ground
  • wandering stock or animals
  • smoke which may reduce visibility
  • Emergency Service vehicles and personnel working and/or moving through the area.

The Incident Controller consults with various emergency service people and people who know the area well and decides where to establish road closures.

Police Officers usually manage road closures. This responsibility can be delegated to emergency personnel such as firefighters or SES personnel.

It can be distressing for you to be kept out of your community. It is important that trained responders are the first to enter. They will assess damage and clean-up in a safe and controlled environment.

Contact the Information Hotline on 1800 362 361 if you are worried about the welfare of a family member, friend or relative during an emergency. This will also help emergency services in their efforts to locate missing people.

The Control Agency will liaise with all key stakeholders and assess the risks before deciding to reopen any roads.

Bona fide residents are generally permitted access at Tier 4, if they have ID showing their address.

At Tier 3, residents wanting to protect/defend their homes or check on their stock will be granted access on production of ID showing proof of their residency.

If you don't have ID you can:

  • attend a designated relief centre
  • contact your local council or nearest police station to find out your options for verifying your identity. They may be able to look you up on the electoral role.
  • contact family or friends to find out whether they have any records or copies of documentation, which may help.

We understand that farmers in particular, need to access their properties as soon as possible to check:

  • stock
  • fences
  • damage to your farm.

While safety will always remain the number one priority for emergency services, we will provide early access when it is safe and appropriate.

Farmers and business owners can expect more consideration of local knowledge in the development of Return to Home guidelines to prioritise the assessment and reopening of roads.

Residents provided with early access are likely to be required to meet minimum safety requirements including appropriate clothing, communications devices, vehicle and equipment.