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Extreme conditions prompt heat and fire warning
As Victoria braces for another two days of extreme heat, fire and health authorities are calling on communities to put health and safety first in the lead up to Christmas.
** State Control Centre media release **
With Extreme and Severe Fire Danger Ratings forecast tomorrow and Sunday, a Total Fire Ban has been declared across the state all weekend.
Saturday is forecast to be hot, dry and windy, with the heat to continue until a cool change comes through on Sunday.
Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley asked Victorians to exercise caution and common sense, and consider the impact of fires and heat even as they enjoyed the start to the holiday season.
“This is a busy time for families and especially this weekend, a lot of people will be out and about finishing shopping or attending events and gatherings.
“We want people to have fun and enjoy themselves, but it is important to remember that safety should be your first priority. That means following Total Fire Ban restriction which means no campfires, no solid fuel barbecues, and no candles outdoors.
“It’s vital that you plan ahead to avoid activities, stay hydrated and look out for others, particularly the elderly and very young.”
As temperatures climbed into the high 30s yesterday, Ambulance Victoria became aware of at least eleven children locked in cars.
“The temperature inside a parked car can double within minutes – it cannot be reinforced enough times child, a pet or anyone in a car,” he said.
Racing Victoria has confirmed all Victorian race meetings on Saturday have been called off due to extreme heat around the state.
A number of national parks have been closed, including:
- Dandenong Ranges National Park
- Werribee River Park
- Plenty Gorge Park - Yellow Gum Recreation Area (including Blue Lake)
Mr Lapsley said it was vital for people in fire risk areas to continue to monitor fire information and warnings, and never to rely on one source.
“Even if you are at home with the blinds down to protect them from the heat, it is important to stay aware of your surroundings,” he said.
“I’m very aware that people in the north and west of the west of the state have experienced a long stretch of hot weather and thank them for their patience.
“Stay informed via emergency.vic.gov.au, tune to ABC local radio, download the FireReady App or follow VicEmergency or CFA on Facebook or Twitter.”