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What does La Nina mean? 45% have no clue

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About 45% of Australian don’t know what La Nina means despite warnings from weather forecasters that the climate event is set to bring more rain and floods this coming summer, according to new research from Allianz.

Allianz says the findings from the research, which is based on responses from 1785 participants, shows many Australians are not as prepared as they should be for extreme weather.

Around 19% say they are entirely not aware La Nina is looming and a quarter think the term – Spanish for “little girl” – refers to something else. Some 6% think the term is Spanish for “little boy”.

About 67% still believe Australia is most at risk from bushfires this coming summer, the survey says.

“This is understandable given the Black Summer last year, and Australians are of course right to be aware of, and prepared for, bushfires,” Allianz says. “However, Allianz is calling for Australians to recognise that a La Nina cycle can also be destructive and needs just as much preparedness as other weather events.”

The research also finds many people are not taking crucial steps to keep their property safe in the event of a catastrophic rain event. About 51% would not secure doors, windows or roof coverings if faced with the threat of a storm, and 29% will not prepare for the impending risk of floods.

Just 36% indicated they will stock up on emergency food supplies and a first aid kit if faced with flooding, and only 25% have started making necessary repairs to their home and/or car to prepare for the severe weather season this year.