News & Media

How three communities responded to bushfire

By: Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC

Category: Community Safety, Planning & Research

  12.25 PM 30 March, 2015

Location: General

Views: 697

Hazard Note 005 summarises results from research commissioned by the South Australia Country Fire Service (CFS) following three very different bushfires in early 2014: a rapid onset fire, a long-campaign fire, and repeat fire incidents. 

While undertaken in South Australia, the research is highly relevant for CFA members, with many findings transferable to Victoria, as well as other states.

The study investigated bushfire risk perceptions, decision-making processes and the behaviour of residents affected by these fires.

Findings showed regardless of the nature of the fire, many residents may have been dangerously late in leaving their homes. Ten percent of interviewees had a written fire plan to guide their decision making. In each of the three interview sites, the percentage of those who ultimately chose to leave as a whole household was approximately double that for the intention to do so. Regarding communication strategies, the results reinforce similar research from other states in finding that a ‘one size fits all’ approach to warning and informing the community during fires is not appropriate.

View the Hazard Note on the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC website. You can also access detailed findings and discussion from the reseach in the full report.

Last Updated: 30 March 2015