The effective communication of public information and warnings is a critical element of emergency management, with the power to save lives. This handbook provides insight and guidance to people who have responsibility for communication with the public in the event of an emergency. The handbook presents nationally agreed principles for warning policy and practice and explores the essential elements and discipline of effective public information and warning delivery.
This handbook is designed to be of value across a wide range of hazards. Whether it is a natural hazard or weather event, a public health emergency, or a hostile attack in an urban setting, the principles, importance and discipline of effective communication are broadly applicable.
The handbook aligns national disaster resilience strategy and policy with practice, notably the National Strategy for Disaster Resilience and Strategic Directions for Fire and Emergency Services in Australia and New Zealand 2017-2021, by guiding and supporting jurisdictions, agencies and other organisations and individuals in their implementation and adoption. It also responds to Recommendation Two of the 2014 National Review of Warnings and Information (ANZEMC 2015), to advance a national approach through improved knowledge management.
The scope of the handbook spans public information and warnings and has a specific and intentional focus on the delivery of warnings. Future revisions of the handbook will expand discussion to include relevant good practice on the provision of public information.