Reducing your risk this bushfire season

Nobody wants to face the prospect of a bushfire in their area. But, depending on where you are in Australia, it can be a very real possibility during the summer months.

Even if you’re in a low risk area, knowing that you’ll be prepared if fire hits can help you sleep a little easier.  

Before a bushfire

Prepare your home

There a few things you can tick off to reduce your risk of injury or property damage.

  • Clear the area around your house of flammable debris, such as dried leaves and fallen tree branches.
  • Keep your lawn cut short.
  • Ensure your gutters are clean. Leaves and twigs can easily build up in there over time.
  • Create a bushfire action plan. You and your family should decide in advance whether you’ll stay in your home or leave, and know where you’re headed if you decide on the latter.  

Prepare an emergency kit

If you need to leave home quickly, there are a few basic items you should take with you:

  • First aid kit
  • Essential medication
  • Important documents
  • Plenty of water
  • Portable phone charger
  • In-car phone charger.

If you have items of sentimental importance that you’d like to take with you, such as photos or jewellery, choose a small amount of items and keep them in a single location.

Review your home and contents insurance

No amount of preparation can guarantee that your home won’t be damaged by events like bushfires. Review your home and contents insurance to ensure that bushfire is covered, as it is with every level of GIO Home and Contents Insurance (except within the first 72 hours of taking out a new policy), and that your sum insured is adequate.

Your sum insured is the amount your home and contents are insured for, and should reflect how much they would cost to rebuild, repair or replace. It can be updated via GIO Online Services, or you can call us on 13 10 10.

Compare Home and Contents Insurance options

During a bushfire

If you decide to leave, do so as soon as possible. Remember to grab your emergency kit.

If you decide to stay:

  • Bring all family members and pets indoors.
  • Fill bathtubs, buckets and sinks with water.
  • Monitor messages from authorities online or over the radio.

More detailed tips are available via several state and territory government websites.

After a bushfire

Once you’re sure that the area is safe, check on your family and neighbours, ensuring that any necessary first aid is administered.

You should then check whether your home, including the outdoor areas, has suffered any damage.

Bushfires are considered an insured event for home and contents insurance, so you’re entitled to make a claim for damage they may cause to your house, your contents, or both. For full coverage details, please refer to the PDS. It’s simple to claim online , or you can call us on 13 10 10.

Or, since GIO is part of the Suncorp Network, you can use the Suncorp App to make a claim quickly and easily from your smartphone.

Learn more about the Suncorp App

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Insurance issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as GIO. Read the Product Disclosure Statement before buying this insurance. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.