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Disasters come in all shapes and forms when it comes to life in Queensland, from cyclones to floods and fires, there's always a risk of something. When you’re quoting on and performing repair work on disaster-damaged buildings, the safety of you, your workers and the homeowners is paramount.
So, we strongly suggest you do an individual inspection on each site to determine the extent of any existing or potential future damage.
Our disaster guidelines, repair work contracts advice and the resources below can also help you get on top of the health and safety issues. Don't forget to prepare for the next severe weather event, using our severe weather checklist.
- Power and plumbing are your key priority:
- Before power is returned, get a licensed electrician to assess/test any all electrical outlets in the home. Be mindful of homes and premises with PV systems as these may continue to produce power, despite network power outages. Find a licensed electrician via the Master Electricians website.
- Get a licensed plumber to check the sewerage system.
- Photograph and record the condition of the damaged building work before starting repairs.
- Remove all mud, dirt and silt prior to rectification.
TOP TIP: Have a suitable first aid kit on site as working in disaster conditions can be hazardous.
Key areas to inspect
- Bathrooms (i.e. tiles and waterproofing)
- Blanket/bulk insulation
- Concrete paths and driveways
- Floor tiles
- Kitchen cupboards, vanity units and laundry units
- Moisture retention (i.e. in timber wall and floor frames)
- Painting (surface/substrate must be dry and clear of debris)
- Skirting & architraves
- Skirting and architraves (especially if any of this is craft wood)
- Termite barriers
- Timber floors
- Trapped water
- Wall sheeting/plasterboard/other wall sheeting
- Wardrobe doors & shelving
- Wet area sheeting.
WARNING: Be mindful of building products containing asbestos. Removal of more than 10m² of bonded asbestos (four standard wall sheets of fibro) requires a “B” Class Asbestos Removal licence.
Before building work starts
- Some building works may require building approval – check with a building certifier first.
- Don’t perform any building work without an appropriate written contract in place.
- If you’re performing work away from home, organise your accommodation prior to arriving.
Help the owner get home quicker
You can help homeowners get home as soon as possible by:
- Checking if power can be reinstated to part of the house, using a qualified electrician
- Assessing if a temporary kitchen bench can be installed while waiting for a new kitchen
- For homes with multiple bathrooms, get one bathroom up and running first.
- Dealing with mould after a storm, flood or cyclone (Queensland Health fact sheet)
- Infection risks from flood recovery and response work (Worksafe Queensland)
- Clean up safely during storm and flood season (Work Safe Queensland)
- Flood safety fact sheet (Work Safe Queensland)
- Storms and floods – information for workplaces (Work Safe Queensland)
- Asbestos Removal (QBCC)
Electrical safety resources
- Electrical safety during flood clean up (Work Safe Queensland)
- Electrical safety during storms (Work Safe Queensland)
- 2022 Flood Crisis (Master Electricians)
- Flood Repair Fact Sheet (Master Electricians)
- Rebuilding after natural disasters (QBCC)
- Guide to Assessment and Repair of Flood Damaged Timber and Timber Framed Houses (Timber Queensland)
Need more information?
If you haven’t found the answer to your questions on our website, give us a call or email us.