Aussies love camping! But Australia is well-known for it’s severe weather events which can sometimes interfere with our camping safety. We get floods, droughts, hail storms, snow storms, cyclones and bushfires. Do enough travelling around this lovely country of ours and chances are you may encounter one of these events or something similar. Just like the sink hole that occurred at the very popular Inskip Point camp ground on the outskirts of Rainbow Beach.
Occurring at about 11pm on Saturday, 26th Sept,2015 the camp ground was packed with holiday makers. A group of campers who were camped close to the waters edge instantly lost their camp sites and belongings to the sink hole. A tent, camper trailer and 4WD with caravan attached was swallowed up by the 9 metre deep sink hole. Several campers tried desperately to save the 4WD and caravan from slipping into the water but realised that it was becoming too dangerous to continue and in the end cut the snatch straps and let the lot go.
A National Parks Ranger told us that this was the sixth sink hole to have occurred at Inskip Point in the last 15 years. Over 200 campers were subsequently evacuated and that particular section of the camp area is now closed.
WHAT TO DO IN AN EMERGENCY
If you were to find yourself in a severe weather event or something similar would you know what to do? These camping safety tips will help to ensure that you get out quickly and safely.
- Always obey all directions given by Police, Fire, SES or who ever is in charge of the situation
- Remain calm and try and keep others around you calm.
- If you are aware of a possible dangerous situation in the area where you are staying, such as a bush fire, don’t leave it until the last moment to evacuate. Leave the area immediately if it is safe to do so.
- If, for example, you have small children consider getting them out first. You can come back for your property later if it is safe to do so.
- Just like at home, have some sort of an emergency plan. Discuss with other adults and older children (12 plus) what you might need to do in the event of an emergency. This is especially important if you are in a remote location.
- At the very least, be familiar with the roads that lead in and out of your campsite.
- Pack up your campsite first. Then if it is safe to do so you can help others in the area.
- Remember, property can be replaced….lives can’t.
Finally, we here at All Around Oz, would like to thank the people who chatted to us about their experiences and wish any other families involved all the best. But most importantly, don’t give up your love of camping and travelling. These things can happen no matter where you are.
**Melissa holds a Certificate in Emergency Management**