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Bush Safety Rules For Families

Bush Safety Rules For Families | Day Trips in South-East Queensland

One of the most enjoyable activities you can do with your family is to take a day trip into the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and South East Queensland hinterlands as well as the greater Brisbane region. There are countless locations with beautiful scenery for you to enjoy bush walking, animal spotting and swimming with the kids. Having a firm grasp on bush safety is of the upmost importance.

There is no denying that nature is beautiful and an incredible teacher, but it can also be unsafe and unpredictable. If you arrive unprepared and don’t have a basic set of rules, you could find yourself in a lot of trouble, and nothing spoils a great day out with the family like an accident.

bush safety creek

To make sure you are well prepared and have a plan, follow these rules to stay safe while out on your day trip.

It is important to always supervise children, unlike theme parks, public swimming pools and other leisure activities, the bush is a natural place with no safety barriers, qualified lifeguards and paramedics just around the corner. Because of this please take extra care watching the kids as they climb, run and swim.

Always keep to the tracks

When bush walking, it is important to stay on the walking tracks. These tracks have been created to ensure you avoid dangerous obstacles such as cliffs, unstable ground and dangerous water. Remember to stay behind safety fences, do not swim under waterfalls and follow all warning signs to avoid any problems.

Let someone back home know where you are going and when you will be back

It’s important to let someone know you will be going into the bush for the day and give them an approximate time you think you will be back. In case anything does go wrong, this person will be a great help to authorities in helping to locate you should you be unable to get to safety or seek help.

Dress appropriately and take supplies

The bush can present many interesting obstacles such as sharp rocks, harsh sun and tracks that take longer to complete than first thought. It’s important to have the right clothing for the job, so sturdy, comfortable shoes which are closed toed are recommended. Having food and water with you is important too, in case something doesn’t go to plan and you are out longer than you thought, or if you just get a snack attack along the way!

Always supervise children when out in the bush

You will find many hazards that your kids are not familiar with including wildlife and dangerous plants, fast flowing water, and cliffs. You don’t want to face any of those situations while you are kilometres from your car so watch those little possums of yours like a hawke!

Never dive into creeks or rock pools without checking the depth first

When walking on rocks and rock ledges remember that they may be slippery and you could fall in, water in nature is never 100% safe so stay alert and never let anyone swim alone.

Bring a first aid kit, and familiarise yourself with what you need.

While we hope you never have to use it, a first aid kit could be a saviour in case of an accident. Check out our article about First Aid kits for Parents

Don’t feed the native wildlife.

Wild animals can become sick from eating human food, they can also become dependant on it, causing them to become aggressive towards people, and no one wants to ruin a perfectly good day out by being attacked by a drop bear!

Always check park warnings before setting off

Walking tracks can be closed after heavy rainfalls as roads can become flooded and dangerous. For the safety of your family, do not enter bush land when the closure signs are displayed

Never attempt to cross flooded creeks

If it’s flooded, forget it! If you find yourself out on the tracks with flooded creek crossings, wait until the water recedes. Be patient, better safe than sorry.

For all emergencies call 000

Be aware that mobile phone reception can be limited in natural areas. If you have trouble calling 000 from your mobile phone, try dialing 112.

Don’t be deterred by all of the rules and regulations, have fun while out of your day trip

Most of these are common sense and are here to remind you what you already know. If you are still unsure, keep these tips handy when thinking about a day out with the family in nature. If you are prepared and organised and understand the rules, you will be sure to have a fun, exciting and safe day out that everyone will enjoy.

If you have any handy tips for keeping safe and well in the bush, we’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas.

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Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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