Community Preparedness for Emergencies, WA

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    Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

    The Community Preparedness for Emergencies, WA survey was conducted in October 2007 as a supplementary survey to the Monthly Population Survey. It collected information relating the impact a major emergency may have on households and the level of household preparedness for an emergency. Information was gathered about the characteristics of households that emergency authorities would need to know should an evacuation be required and how prepared householders were in the event of an emergency.


The submission for this survey came from Fire and Emergency Services Authority of Western Australia (FESA). It was interested in finding out the level of preparedness of the WA community with respect to emergencies of a catastrophic nature. This category of emergency includes earthquake, tsunami, widespread floods, cyclone/tornado, biological / radiological attack and any other emergency that is large-scale and highly destructive in nature. Preparedness refers to a household having emergency / evacuation plans (where evacuation is to a location remote from the dwelling), resource readiness and methods of maintaining communication with relevant agencies / groups.

Other agencies that provided input were: WA Police, and Dept Premier and Cabinet (DPC)
Data will be analysed by :
metropolitan / non-metropolitan region levels
whether households have previously experienced a major emergency
whether households have a dwelling exit plan
selected age grouping
household type
tenure type
dwelling type
ability to understand English

    The Community Preparedness for Emergencies Survey was conducted as a supplement to the ABS Monthly Population Survey (MPS) in October 2007. It was conducted on a subset of the full sample of private dwellings in WA that were included in the MPS. It covered all persons who were usual residents of private dwellings except:
      • members of the Australian permanent defence forces;
      • certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments, customarily excluded from censuses and surveys;
      • overseas residents in Australia;
      • members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependents) stationed in Australia; and
      • persons living in sparsely settled areas of WA.

    Coverage rules were applied to ensure that each person was associated with only one dwelling, and hence had only one chance of selection in the survey.


    Conceptual framework
    not applicable

    Main outputs
    Data items in the tables are divided into two parts:
    i) Evacuation plan and selected household characteristics for the following categories:
    experienced any major emergencies
    assistance required to exit dwelling
    transport assistance requiring
    access to alternate accommodation
    pets needing evacuation
    provide unpaid care to non-household member
    have a role that may be called on to assist
    unable to understand English
    willingness to evacuate

    ii) Emergency preparedness of the household relating to:
    exit plan from dwelling
    agreed meeting place
    availability of stored drinking water
    availability of food that does not need cooking or refrigeration
    access to a portable radio with working batteries
    access to mobile phones
    access to landline telephone
    internet access
    first aid qualification
    household with members on long term medication
    keeping of medication in one location for households with members on long-term medication
    keeping of important documents together
    having a torch for ready use.

    The data tables are by:
    Perth metropolitan region
    WA non-metropolitan region
    experience in major emergency
    selected age group
    household type
    tenure type
    dwelling type
    exit plan [for part (i) data items]
    ability to understand English [for part (ii) data items]

    Relevant ABS, National and/or International classifications and standards will be used. Where these are not available, the survey will aim for consistency with other ABS surveys.

    Other concepts (summary)
    Not applicable

    Western Australia
    Major Statistical Region
    Statistical Region

    Comments and/or Other Regions

    Once Only

    Frequency comments

    State supplementary survey topics vary each year. The Community Preparedness for Emergencies, WA 2007 survey is a new one-off survey. A separate survey but on the same topic was conducted in NSW in 2003 (Community Preparedness for Emergencies, New South Wales, October 2003, cat. no. 4818.1).


    Data availability comments

    Data will be available in the publication 'Community Preparedness for Emergencies, WA, Oct 2007' (ABS Cat No. 4818.5). Additional data will be available on request as a chargeable service.

    22/04/2008 12:46 PM