An emergency is:

The actual or imminent occurrence of an event which endangers or threatens the safety or health of any person in the area; and/or destroys, or threatens to destroy or damage any property.

In the event of a time critical or life-threatening Emergency Call (0) 000 (112 from Mobile) and request either Police, Fire or Ambulance. 

After this call, or if emergency services are not required, contact JCU Security on (478) 15555 or 1800 675559 to advise and for further assistance.

JCU Cyclone Response

Tropical Cyclone Advice

Bureau of Meteorology

Townsville City Council Disaster Management Plan

Cairns Regional Council Disaster Management Unit

The University's Emergency Controller will:

Advise via general email that a Cyclone Advice has been initiated and the current status of the cyclone.

Pro Vice Chancellors, Heads of School, Heads of Halls and Managers should ensure a review of the status of the areas under their control is carried out.

Tropical Cyclone Watch

Issued if a cyclone is expected to affect coastal communities within 48 hours, but not expected within 24 hours

Stage 1

The University's Emergency Controller will:

Advise via general email that a Cyclone Watch has been initiated and the current status of the cyclone. At this point, Pro Vice Chancellors, Heads of School, Heads of Halls and Managers should activate the first stage of their individual Cyclone Action Plans. The Emergency Controller is available to provide advice to faculties and departments should this be required.

Tropical Cyclone Warning Stage

Issued if a cyclone is affecting or is expected to affect coastal communities within 24 hours

Stage 2

The University's Emergency Controller will:

Notify via email that a Cyclone Warning has been issued, and advise the University Community to implement the second stage of their Cyclone Action Plans.

Where necessary the impact of a possible closure of the University, and system shutdowns should be mitigated.

Pro Vice Chancellors, Heads of School, Heads of Halls and Managers should ensure all pre-cyclone preparations have been completed, in accordance with their individual plans.

If the Bureau of Meteorology forecasts the likelihood of cyclonic winds affecting the area in which the facility is located during or soon after University teaching hours, a decision to close the University will be made by the Vice-Chancellor at the earliest opportunity.

The decision to close the University will be based on the following considerations: - obligations of staff and student needs in relation to closures of schools and childcare centres, children at home, elderly relatives and visitors. Environmental factors like local flooding, issues such as public transport and the requirement to take shelter, including the need to evacuate students in residence, will be taken into consideration at this point.

Authority to advise staff to proceed home and to order any building, facility or the entire University closed rests with the Vice-Chancellor. Pro Vice Chancellors, Heads of School, Heads of Halls and Managers wishing to release staff from duty or close down all or part of any building they occupy are required to consult with the Vice-Chancellor or the Emergency Controller prior to taking such action.

Where a decision is made to close the University the Emergency Controller, will communicate this decision via broadcast email. Civil Authorities will be notified of the decision and the notice of closure will be broadcast by Local Radio Stations.

All Clear

The Emergency Controller will:

  • Assess the impact of the cyclone and take all necessary action to resume operations at the University.
  • Provide an Assessment and Recommendation to the Vice Chancellor and if directed to the Vice Chancellors Advisory Committee Group.

The Vice-Chancellor based on the assessment will make an announcement regarding the continued operation of the University.

Individual Cyclone Action Plans

Each faculty, school and department is required to formulate individual Cyclone Action Plans to cater for the specific needs of their areas at Cyclone Watch and Cyclone Warning stages. Assistance will be available in preparing these plans from the Security Manager or W.H. & S Coordinator., and will include consideration of the following:

  • The relaying of messages and information to their staff.
  • Special requirements including protection of specialised equipment, experiments in progress.
  • Field Trips in progress.
  • Guidelines for staff going on leave during the cyclone season.
  • Protection of documents, files, computer equipment.
  • Provision of the names of staff to be included on the Recall List.
  • Individual staff needs including children at school or in child care, visiting relatives.
  • Student needs including posting of notices, evacuation procedures.
  • Identification of Faculty/Division specific needs.
  • Risk analysis including identification, assessment and control.

Link to Policies, Guidelines and Forms on the following -

Biosafety and Quarantine
Boating and Diving
Children in the Workplace and Study Environment
Construction Works
Consultation and Participation
Contractor Safety Management
Document Management
Drugs and Poisons
Electrical Safety
Emergency Management
  • Medical Emergency

    Fire Smoke Guideline

    Bomb Threat Guideline

    Cyclone Guideline

Field Trips
Hazardous Chemicals
Health and Safety Management System (HSMS)
Health and Wellbeing
Incidents and Hazards
Laboratory Safety
Occupational Hygiene
Permit to Work Forms
Radiation Risk Management
Smoke - free Campus
Training and Competency
Vehicles, Plant and Equipment

JCU is following the advice of the Australian Government Department of Health and Queensland Health, and conforming to guidelines from Education Queensland to protect the health and wellness of those in our community.

We are monitoring developments closely and meeting regularly to consider any developments and potential impacts on our community and operations. We will continue to provide updates as new information becomes available.

Please observe all precautions recommended by health authorities to prevent the virus from spreading.

Find out more