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Local government: Preparation and recovery

Flood recovery centreEnvironmental Health Officers (EHOs) play an important role within State and Local Government helping communities prepare and recovery from natural disasters and emergencies.

It is important for EHOs to appropriately plan for and be aware of the likely hazards and potential disasters that may impact on their communities.

Work done in advance of possible emergencies and disasters is an essential aspect of disaster management. It enables a reduction in the severity of disasters, through prevention and mitigation, as well as improved emergency response, through preparation and planning.

Some of the roles of EHOs during disaster preparedness and recovery include:

  • provision of emergency water and sanitation services
  • vector and pest control
  • provision of waste disposal and collection facilities
  • personal hygiene and disinfection
  • disposal of dead stock and animals
  • hazardous materials
  • food hygiene and
  • the assessment of the danger of epidemics

Useful resources

  • Mosquitoes and Cyclones (PDF 202KB)
    Extensive breeding habitat for several types of nuisance insects (especially mosquitoes) can result from the heavy rains and associated flooding or tidal storm surges in coastal regions that accompany cyclones.
  • Environmental Health in Emergencies and Disasters : A Practical Guide (External link)
    This World Health Organisation book serves as an introduction to environmental health needs for disaster management. The book is of interest to anyone who plans and supervises environmental health activities on a day-to-day basis and to front-line staff working on public health inspection and improvement, employees of water and sanitation companies; community-level workers who may play a leading role in emergency preparedness, such as teachers or Red Cross/Red Crescent workers; and primary health-care workers who may be called upon to respond to an emergency.
  • Bureau of Meteorology, Western Australian Flood Warning Centre (External link)
  • Department of Water (External link)
    For information on river and flood levels
  • FESA State Emergency Service (External link)
    Advises people to stay away from flood water and flood ways. Some roads may be impassable, obey road closure signs and do not drive into water of unknown depth and current. Floodwaters are dangerous and you should not walk, swim or play in them. Visit the website for more safety tips. 

Public resources

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