There are a number of emergency situations that can arise as a result of using gas and electricity in our everyday lives.

Remember to call 000 in an emergency situation.

It is important to know what to do in the event of a power outage, electric shock or a fire. Our tips may be a helpful start.

Power outages

Power outages can occur due to a number of reasons. In the event of a power outage;

  • Switch off your heating and cooling appliances and electrical equipment
  • Use torches, which you will have already stored in easy to access places
  • Do not use candles

The Australian Energy Regulator  (AER) sets certain service standards and monitors the duration and frequency of power interruptions to consumers.

Electric shocks

Electric shocks are not always fatal. They may stop the heart, cause burns, force muscles to contract and paralyse breathing. Often electric shock victims cannot let go of the appliance that is passing the current to the body.

If you witness an electric shock:

  • Switch off the power and pull out the plug, so long as there is no danger of you also getting an electric shock.
  • If you cannot turn the appliance off, use heavy duty insulating gloves or something made of rubber, dry cloth or cured dry wood to free the shock victim (do not use wet or recently sawn wood as this can contain sap that will conduct electricity). It may be safe to use their clothing but only if it is dry
  • Protect yourself and any bystanders from the possibility of further shocks
  • Don’t touch the shock victim’s skin until they are free of the current
  • Seek immediate medical assistance for the victim via 000
  • If you are trained in resuscitation techniques, you should attempt to resuscitate the victim as soon as they are no longer in contact with the electrical current
  • Never attempt to rescue a person where a high voltage electrical current is involved.

Fire safety

Fire blankets and extinguishers may be used to put out small fires, but you should always call 000 in the case of an emergency.

  • If the fire is small, use a fire blanket or appropriate extinguisher to smother it
  • Never throw water on an electrical fire as you could be electrocuted
  • Turn off or unplug electrical appliances if they catch on fire - as soon as it is safe to do so
  • If your clothing catches on fire "Stop, Drop and Roll". Keep rolling until all flames are extinguished
  • Plan and practice a home escape plan to ensure that everyone knows what to do in the event of a fire