If you, a member of your family, friend or neighbour has mobility issues, hearing or visual impairments or intellectual disabilities, it is important you take extra time to plan for how you will respond to an emergency.

People who need assistance need to put in place a support network of people close to home or work who can provide support during an event.

  • Make a plan and tailor it to your needs. Think about what support you require.
  • Prepare a getaway kit. Consider the addition of medication and important equipment you may need. Include a pen and paper to assist you in communicating with others.
  • Stay Informed.

 Hearing Impairment

  • Ask your support network to alert you to warnings and keep you informed.
  • Consider installing a system appropriate to your needs such as an alarm with flashing strobe lights to get your attention. Replace the batteries once a year.
  • You may want to consider giving a key to a neighbour so they can alert you to a warning.

Deaf Aotearoa New Zealand have services available to assist deaf and hearing-impaired people. Information on the hazards and advice on how to be prepared is presented in New Zealand Sign Language and captions on YouTube and available on DVD.

Dead Aotearoa New Zealand

Deaf Aotearoa – The voice of Deaf people in New Zealand

Sight Impairment

  • People who are blind or partially sighted may have to depend on others if they have to evacuate or go to an unfamiliar place.
  • If you have a guide dog, make sure you have a getaway kit for your dog.
  • Keep extra canes at home and in the workplace even if you use a guide dog. Be aware that animals may become confused or disoriented in an emergency.
  • Disability assist dogs will be allowed to stay in Civil Defence Centres with their owners.
  • Information on the hazards and advice on how to be prepared is available in audio formats.

Advice for the Blind and Visually Impaired

Advice for the Blind and Visually Impaired

Physical Disability or Mobility Impairment

If you or someone you are caring for has a physical disability or difficulty with mobility, include mobility aids in your emergency getaway kit. This will help you cope if you are evacuated to a different area. If you are in an earthquake and cannot Drop, Cover Hold, understand the correct actions to take.

Drop, Cover and Hold information for people with physical disability or mobility impairment

Drop, Cover, Hold Information

Special Food Requirements

If you, or someone you are caring for, have special dietary needs, make sure there is sufficient stock of these food items for at least seven days at home, and in the emergency getaway kit. If you have to be evacuated, emergency shelters are unlikely to have the special food items you may need.

Asthma and Respiratory Problems

People with asthma or a respiratory disorder will be more susceptible to dust, volcanic ash, or the stress of an emergency. Make sure you have dust masks at home and in your emergency getaway kit and sufficient medicines for at least seven days.

More Advice

For more advice for preparing with disabilities, visit the GetReady website.