Emergency preparedness

The Department of Primary Industries and Regions (PIRSA) is responsible for biosecurity emergency preparedness in South Australia.

PIRSA has the following main activities:

  • planning
  • training
  • biosecurity awareness
  • animals in emergencies.


PIRSA has emergency response plans that explain:

  • roles and responsibilities in the event of biosecurity emergencies
  • legislative authorities
  • procedures to be undertaken
  • roles of industry and supporting agencies.

The plan is reviewed annually.


Training programs are provided for all staff likely to be involved in a biosecurity emergency response.

This training focuses on biosecurity emergency response team development, including:

  • workshops
  • resource development
  • desktop exercises
  • simulation exercises.

Biosecurity awareness

Biosecurity SA works with primary industries to promote biosecurity and emergency pest and disease awareness through:

  • workshops
  • field days
  • simulation exercises
  • industry liaison identification and training.

Animals in Emergencies

Animal owners are responsible for the welfare of their animals at all stages of emergencies however government and non-government organisations can play a supporting role in helping people exercise their responsibilities for animals.

Past emergency events have shown that improving the capacity to plan ahead and manage animals in emergencies is important to reduce last-minute risk-taking behaviour, improve animal welfare outcomes and aid in recovery after emergency events.


PIRSA has developed the ‘Managing Animals in Emergencies’ framework in liaison with the community, other government agencies, peak industry bodies and animal welfare organisations.

Funded by the Natural Disaster Resilience Program, the Animals in Emergencies framework is aimed at ensuring all animals are fully considered by owners, key government and industry stakeholders when planning for, and responding to, emergencies.

The framework outlines guiding principles to support planning for the management of animals in emergencies at all levels in South Australia. It also shows current roles and responsibilities for animals before, during and after emergencies and who provides services for animals.

Managing Animals in Emergencies (PDF 1.9 MB)

More information about animal safety in emergencies.


Elena Petrenas
Manager Emergency Management
PIRSA – Biosecurity SA

Phone: (08) 8207 0864
Mobile: 0438 822 795
Email: elena.petrenas@sa.gov.au

Page Last Reviewed: 09 Mar 2018
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