A collaborative working group of organizations in Australia including: The Centre for Health Research, School of Medicine, Western Sydney University, Sydney, NSW, Australia; Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre, Melbourne, VIC, Australia; Senior Lecturer Organizational Psychology, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW, Australia have worked together to study what new strategies and tactics will help increase human survival rates by helping animal owners learn to better interact with emergency responders before and during bushfire (wildfire) events. The name of the paper is; “Don’t just do something… stand there!” emergency responders’ peri-incident perceptions of animal owners in bushfire.
The study is focusing on enhancing awareness of risk during a fire and increasing the preparedness of animals and their owners by having them develop a better working and more effective communication with emergency responders before a wildfire event. The data that defined the research was extrapolated from focus groups and semi-structured interviews. The analysis of this data showed that there were positive outcomes when animal owners and emergency responders developed a “reciprocal collaborative relationship.” Simple solutions were explored.
Did you know that the NFPA provides great resources available on NFPA’s TakeAction page to help animal owners better prepare for a wildfire before a wildfire event? There are 2 downloadable PDFs one called the Household Pet Evacuation Kit and the other Horses and Livestock evacuation checklist. There is also a cute video for children about preparing pets before a wildfire. Check out these resources to help you and your animals be better prepared for wildfire.