Preparing for Floods

In September 2020, the Bureau of Meteorology declared a La Niña was officially underway in Australia, signalling we could be in for a wet spring and summer. La Niña conditions generally result in above average rainfall over much of Australia.

This means that after years of drought and fire prone conditions, the dairy industry needs to be prepared for a greater risk of flooding or flash flooding over the 2020/21 summer and spring.

The below list of resources includes tools to help you assess and prepare for flood risk on your property, where to go to keep up to date with the latest weather warnings and emergency alerts, and advice for managing through and recovering from flood impacts.




Author and link

Preparing for flood

This guide helps dairy farmers to prepare for flood and lessen the time it takes to recover from such an event.

Dairy Australia 

Emergency preparedness checklist

The Emergency preparedness checklist includes suggestions to help farmers prepare for and reduce the potential for injury and property damage. 

Dairy Australia

Preparing for power outages

Preparing for power outages will help farmers develop a contingency plan that will save time and keep the dairy operational during a power outage. 

Dairy Australia

Flood and cyclone preparedness (DPIRD, WA)

Basic instructions on flood, storm and cyclone preparedness, including links to DFES.

Western Australia DPIRD preparedness and recovery

Natural Disaster Resilience Program: floods

The purpose of the course is to assist farmers to develop flood mapping, mitigation and resilience management plans for their property. Our focus is on preparing for the next flood, learning lessons from the past and providing technical and business advice to further improve resilience to future floods. 

Queensland Farmers' Federation

Disaster Management Course

This course provides a step by step process for disaster recovery. Learn how to strengthen your businesses long term resilience to natural disasters by implementing the disaster management courses widely adopted PPRR framework.

Queensland Farmers' Federation

Vic SES Floodsafe resources

Information hub (not ag specific), including:

  • Find your local flood information

  • How can I prepare my home for floods?

  • How do flood warning systems work?

  • Floods, storms and landslides after bushfires.

Victoria State Emergency Service

Farmsafe emergency contacts template

Farm emergency contacts template.

 Farmsafe Aus

NSW SES Flood resources

A range of preparatory resources from New South Wales State Emergency Service.

NSW State Emergency Service




Author and link 

Australia Rainfall and River Conditions

View current warnings for Australia on rainfall and river conditions. 

Bureau of Meteorology

Climate outlooks—weeks, months and seasons

National climate outlooks issued Thursdays. One and two-week outlooks are also issued Mondays.

 Bureau of Meteorology

Fast Break newsletter

The Fast Break details oceanic and atmospheric climate driver activity over the last month and summarises three-month model predictions for the Pacific and Indian Oceans, rainfall and temperature for Vic, SA, southern NSW and Tas. 

Available via AgVic and GRDC

Floods and Storms: Current Situation

Current information on floods and storms in NSW. Monthly seasonal conditions updates also available online here.

NSW Department of Primary Industries

VicEmergency app

The VicEmergency app aligns with the VicEmergency website to provide a centralised location for Victorians to access timely emergency information and warnings.

The app includes warnings and incident notifications for fire, flood, storm, earthquake, tsunami, weather warnings, shark sightings, beach closures and more. 

Vic Emergency

Response phase - Animal health and welfare



 Author and link

Mastitis control in wet conditions

This factsheet outlines the four key steps when dealing with mastitis in wet or muddy periods. 

Dairy Australia

Managing lameness in wet conditions

This factsheet provides an overview of common types of lameness and management strategies which can be implemented in wet conditions. 

Dairy Australia

Importance of drinking water access and quality

Access to quality drinking water is essential for dairy cow productivity, health and welfare.

Dairy Australia

Stock Water Budgeting Tool

The stock water budgeting tool helps dairy farmers assess the risk of running short on stock water at key times of the year.

The tool takes 10 minutes and uses easy to access data such as herd size, milking shed size, water use and storage size.

Dairy Australia

Stock water planning

A factsheet on stock water planning and how to use the Stock Water Supply Risk Assessment Tool.

Dairy Australia

Stock water – supply, cow access and quality video

Feedbase and nutrition lead, Ruairi McDonnell and dairy consultant, Steve Little discuss stock water planning for summer, including the importance of water accessibility and maintaining water quality. 

Dairy Australia

Water quality for livestock

Information on water quality for livestock, including consideration post-floods. Detailed information on contaminated dam water also available here.

Western Australia DPIRD

Response phase - Farm infrastructure 



Author and link 

What to do immediately after a flood

What to do following a flood, including detailed instructions on:

  • checking your health and wellbeing

  • checking livestock, pets and animals

  • recovering assets and check hazards

  • finance and insurance.

Victoria Department of Agriculture

Building sediment fences

Practical steps for landowners: Building sediment fences video.

Victoria Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning

QFF Farmer Disaster Support

Hub for available disaster support resources for Queensland farmers.

Queensland Farmers' Federation

Response phase - Milking



Author and link

Milking through power outages

This flyer provides an overview of steps farmers can take to ensure their operations are not overly impacted by prolonged power disruption.

Dairy Australia

Managing power outages 

Advice for managing power outages during emergencies.

Dairy New Zealand

Missed milkings due to adverse effects

Advice for managing missed milking due to power outages or other emergencies.

Dairy Australia

Emergency disposal of milk 

Information on milk disposal on farm including factors to be considered, disposal methods and legal obligations.

Victoria Department of Agriculture

Recovery phase



Author and link 

Recovering from floods

This guide details the things to prioritise when recovering from floods.

Dairy Australia

What is an Impact Diary?

This factsheet covers what you need to record in an Impact Diary, to help substantiate claims on losses after a natural disaster.

Dairy Australia

National Centre for Farmer Health

Support services directory - Staying healthy and well is important in good times and trying times. Drought, flood, bushfires and change in prices can be a trying time for many farmers. We have compiled this list of resources as an easy reference for you to seek the required support.

National Centre for Farmer Health

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