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Millions of Aussie households don’t have an emergency plan for wild weather or including their pets

Australians are being urged not to be complacent about preparing for wild weather and emergencies, with new research from NRMA Insurance revealing that more than 12.3 million Australians[1] don’t have an emergency plan.

The research[2] features in the latest edition of the NRMA Insurance Wild Weather Tracker (the Tracker) and highlights the critical need for every Australian household to have an emergency plan, with only one in five families having discussed the safest place to meet should an emergency happen (21%).


Apathy around emergency planning was also evident in pet owners, with two thirds stating they do not know where they would safely keep their pets if the unexpected happened (66%).

The findings follow the launch of the new improved Get Prepared app, co-created by Australian Red Cross and NRMA Insurance, to make it simple for Aussie households to create an all-hazards emergency RediPlan.


NRMA Insurance Executive Manager Claims Natalie Major is encouraging everyone to use the app to plan how they would respond and recover in an emergency.

“The Get Prepared app is a digital version of the Red Cross RediPlan, making it easier for Aussies to create an emergency plan,” Ms Major said.

“The app ensures that you have all the information you need such as key contacts, meeting places and important documents on-hand and easily accessible. It also prompts people to consider how they would manage stress during and after an emergency.”


The advice to have an emergency plan is particularly important with a warmer and drier than average winter forecast, leading into a potentially dangerous bushfire season.


NRMA Insurance received 10,151 claims for wild weather damage to homes and vehicles nationally during autumn. Most of these claims were for damage to vehicles (5,478) with intense hailstorms in New South Wales causing extensive damage in late May.


More than a third of all home claims nationally were the result of severe weather damage this autumn.


Australian Red Cross Head of Emergency Services Andrew Coghlan says it’s important Australians prepare in advance for any type of emergency their household may encounter:

“Emergencies can occur anywhere, at any time and when they happen, there’s lots of decisions to make. Last year alone, Australian Red Cross supported more than 130,000 people during emergencies such as bushfires, floods and severe storms. We see first-hand the benefits of creating an emergency plan on the Get Prepared app, which not only helps your household prepare to respond to the physical impacts of emergencies, but also prepare for the mental and social impacts of emergencies.”

The NRMA Insurance research shows younger people (aged 18-34 years old) and city-dwellers are less likely to have an emergency plan[3].

It also reveals that many Aussies are not well-connected to their neighbours, despite community ties being key to resilience and recovery. Surprisingly, one in three people say they don’t know their neighbours well enough to rely on them for support in an emergency (32%).

“We’re urging people to take three steps to prepare for wild weather this winter; make an emergency plan using the Get Prepared app, share your contact details with your neighbours and discuss your emergency plan with your household,” continued Ms Major.

Fewer Australians are actively preparing for wild weather or planning to in the next three months[4], yet those who have an emergency plan are more likely to feel prepared for wild weather (84%) than those who don’t (47%).

Download the autumn 2023 NRMA Insurance Wild Weather Tracker:


The Australian Red Cross Get Prepared app is available to download for iOS and Android devices.


Visit the First Saturday of the Season website to learn more about what you can do to prepare and download the new and improved Australian Red Cross Get Prepared app, co-created with NRMA Insurance.


About the Wild Weather Tracker

The NRMA Insurance Wild Weather Tracker monitors severe weather claims across New South Wales, Queensland, the ACT, South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania and is released after every season to encourage people to take regular steps to protect their homes, properties, vehicles and communities. Online research of 3,500 people across NSW (1,000), QLD (1,000), the ACT (500), SA (500) and WA (500) was conducted on behalf of NRMA Insurance by PureProfile in May 2023.


About NRMA Insurance

NRMA Insurance is one of Australia’s most trusted general insurance providers – helping people protect the things they care about since 1920. It has a long proud history of working with communities to build their resilience against severe weather and keep people safer on the road. NRMA Insurance protects customers across NSW, Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia, ACT and Tasmania. NRMA Insurance is backed by IAG, the largest general insurer in Australia and New Zealand.




 1 Based on survey findings (61% of Australians don’t have an emergency plan) and latest ABS population figures (18+)

2 Online research of 3,500 people across NSW (1,000), QLD (1,000), the ACT (500), SA (500) and WA (500) – conducted on behalf of NRMA Insurance by PureProfile in May 2023

 3 Survey findings showing 65% of younger people aged 18-34 years old don’t have a plan compared to 58% of those aged over 55, and 64% of people living in major metro areas don’t have a plan compared to 42% of those living in rural areas

 4 Just 1 in 3 took any steps to prepare during autumn and only 51% plan to this winter: The lowest since quarterly NRMA Insurance Wild Weather Tracker research commenced in autumn 2021.

MEDIA RELEASE, 20th June 2023

Related Topics:

Managing your Dog during Bushfires & Smoke Hazards


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