Health & safety


Visit the Australian Bureau of Meteorology website for up-to-date weather reports.

Fire danger rating and fire bans

Visit the NSW Rural Fire Service website to check the fire danger rating and for fire bans in your local area.

Coping with hot weather

Hot weather can affect your health, causing dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Take simple precautions to stay healthy at outdoor events during hot weather:

  • drink plenty of water, and carry a water bottle with you
  • avoid alcohol and hot or sugary drinks
  • limit physical activity
  • try to stay out of the sun during the hottest part of the day
  • wear sunscreen and reapply regularly according to instructions
  • wear a hat, sunglasses and loose fitting garments made from natural fibres
  • make sure to wear comfortable shoes
  • carry medication with you in case you are delayed getting home.

Signs of heat-related illness include confusion, dizziness, fainting, nausea, vomiting, weakness, headaches and loss of sweating. People showing any of these signs should seek urgent medical attention available from St John’s Ambulance at the events or a local emergency department.

If you feel at all unwell, stay away from the event.

Learn more ways to beat the heat.

Smoke, air pollution & bushfires

Children, older adults and people with heart and lung conditions are most susceptible to the effects of air pollution and excessive smoke.

Asthma sufferers need to follow their Asthma Action Plan and take their relieving medication where necessary. If symptoms get worse, asthma sufferers need to seek medical advice.

If hazardous smoke conditions occur, your local public health unit may advise you to postpone outdoor events or seek shelter in air-conditioned premises or a clean-air room, if one is available.

If a bushfire lasts a long time – say, a few weeks – consider taking precautions such as reducing physical activity and/or relocating to a cleaner environment.

Learn how to reduce the effect of bushfire smoke on your health.

Sun exposure

The Australian sun is intense in January so make sure you:

  • slip on a shirt or other weather-appropriate clothing
  • slap on a hat
  • slop on some sunscreen throughout Australia Day
  • seek shade where possible and minimise the time you spend in the sun between 10 AM and 3 PM
  • slide on some sunnies (i.e. sunglasses). 

Learn how to be sun smart on the Cancer Council website.


Sydney tap water is of a high quality. It’s treated to high standards and safe to drink straight from the tap. 

BYO alcohol restrictions apply

There is no BYO alcohol and no glass allowed on Australia Day at the Rocks, Overseas Passenger Terminal, Circular Quay, Hickson Road Reserve, Circular Quay East, Darling Harbour, and Bradfield Park in North Sydney. 

Check with your local council directly if alcohol restrictions apply at local events.

If you choose to celebrate our national day with a drink, know your limits. For everyone’s safety, drink in moderation and look after yourself, your mates and your city.

National security

The Australia Day Council of NSW has been working closely with relevant law enforcement authorities to plan and prepare ahead of time, to ensure you enjoy a safe and secure Australia Day. 

Hundreds of extra police officers will be deployed in Sydney on the ground, on the water and in the air to provide a highly-visible and mobile policing response. 

NSW Police across the state will be involved in 'Operation Australia' to ensure Australia Day is safe in your community.

Learn more on the Australian National Security website.

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