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2015-16 Summer Fire Ad Campaign kicks off
The 2015-16 Summer Fire Campaign coordinated by the Department of Justice & Regulation (DJR) kicked off in early December with advertisements appearing on TV, radio, print and online.
The focus is to prepare Victorians for the long, hot and dry summer season ahead.
The Southern Australia Seasonal Bushfire Outlook 2015-16 has predicted an above normal fire season with increased bushfire risk for Victoria. As a result, key messages for the Summer Fire Campaign are highlighting:
- Importance of planning and preparing to leave early
- High risk of grassfires for communities on the urban fringe
- Understanding and monitoring warnings from emergency services and broadcasters
- Importance of travellers remaining informed of local conditions
- Health risks associated with extreme heat.
The Victorian Government advertising campaign is being run alongside local engagement activities to inform Victorian communities about their risks this summer.
Advertising will run until the end of March, and will again focus on asking Victorians to ‘leave and live’. There will be ads targeting Melbourne’s urban fringe and tourists travelling throughout the state, as well as an increased focus on building community awareness and understanding of reckless fires and arson.
Advertisements will be distributed in a variety of languages on TV, radio, social media, and through both state and local newspapers. Targeted advertising according to bush or grassfire risk has been identified through accessing CFA’s Victorian Fire Risk Register (VFRR) data.
DJR are also working with Public Transport Victoria to have posters placed in train stations in Melbourne’s peri-urban areas. Some stations will have targeted urban grassfire messages, while others will have general messages. VFRR data was used to determine the station locations with an urban grassfire risk.
Outdoor advertising through mobile trailers in January and February are likely to be visible around regional Victoria, this is still being confirmed.
DJR has also negotiated interview opportunities for our operational members in the field across Victoria. CFA Media has coordinated this, and interviews will be conducted throughout summer.
A range of new Community Service Announcements and TV ads have been created with CFA, MFB and VicPol members promoting preparedness messages about urban fringe grassfires, recklessness and arson, and general preparedness and awareness. This has been a great opportunity for the local people on the ground to have a face as part of the campaign, in the lead up to the ‘Leave & Live’ TVCs which will run during the warmer January/February weather. These videos are all accessible through the CFA YouTube page.
Social media posts are also being coordinated between agencies with a schedule that has been pre-arranged and agreed, so campaign posts will be available predominately through CFA’s Facebook page www.facebook.com/cfavic
Summer Fire Safety Local Initiatives
This year CFA provided members and selected community organisations with small, one-off funding grants to deliver highly localised projects that extend beyond existing planned activities. A total of 16 projects were selected across the state, with priority given to projects that build and empower community leadership and strengthen resilience.
Two of the projects are already complete, these include: the Walking Forward Disaster Relief Team (an online service to assist horse owners prepare and plan for fires) and the multi-brigade CFA Open Day coordinated by the Stonyford Brigade, which saw eight of our brigades join forces with SES and other local services.
Other local initiatives include:
- 15 Variable Messaging Boards (VMBs) placed in high-risk areas across Victoria to provide fire and heat safety messages throughout summer. Districts and brigades have provided feedback that this is a very effective method of informing travellers/commuters.
- Reprinting and distribution of Fire Safety publications.
- Additional financial support for Property Advice Visits (PAVs).
- Additional financial support for Mobile Education Bushfire Units (MEBUs) to support local engagement activities in high risk areas around the state.
Due to the early start to the fire season, Fire Action Week ran from 1-8 November this year, and provided an opportunity for Victorians to plan and prepare for the risk of fire in summer. The official launch was held at a CFA Community Day in Endeavour Hills, where residents on Melbourne’s urban fringe learned about local fire risks and how to take action to improve their safety.
CFA brigades right across Victoria have been busy holding Open Days, Fire Ready, Bushfire Planning Workshops, and community engagement sessions and exercises in the lead up to the summer fire season. Over 200 brigades hosted Open Days to raise awareness of fire risk and community safety.
All CFA members can now access a broad range of communication materials on the Template Toolkit (available through Brigades Online and the CFA intranet). These materials include Community Safety Announcements (CSAs), TVCs, social media banners, tiles, info graphics, fact sheets and radio clips.
We have also included ‘Survive the Heat’ materials developed this year by the Department of Health & Human Services.