News & Media

Potentially severe fire season, Rostering system trial, Tanker washer fit out

By: Euan Ferguson

  5.42 PM 21 November, 2014

Views: 2020

Potentially Severe Fire Season - Updated Seasonal Outlook

The Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC has released an update to the Southern Australia Seasonal Bushfire Outlook. The new edition released as Hazard Note 003 replaces the previous outlook for Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.  The revised update is due to spring being unseasonably dry across south eastern Australia and the expectation of a hot and dry summer.

The bushfire potential for the vast majority of Victoria is now considered to be above normal meaning it is more likely that the season will be early and fuels will be dry. Fires may be more intense and require a greater weight of attack. All Victorian districts except the Mallee and East Gippsland may expect above normal fire potential.

I encourage you to read the Hazard Note accessible by clicking here or visiting  http://www.bnhcrc.com.au/hazardnotes. The updated seasonal outlook must be considered in finalising preparedness arrangements and ensuring readiness. The outlook reinforces the importance of “hitting fires hard and fast, allowing for safety first”.

D13 Volunteers Trial New Rostering System

22 brigades and two the Maroondah and Yarra Valley Group will be trialling CFA’s new online rostering system this fire season to resource and manage strike teams when attending local incidents. The pilot will enable members to better plan their response ahead of Total Fire Bans or predicted hot days.  This is a significant benefit for CFA and addresses recommendations in the Victorian Auditor General’s Managing Emergency Services Volunteers report in relation to having a clear picture of our volunteer capacity at any time. By running the pilot in D13 this season, we will be able to test its functionality and make any necessary improvements before deploying it across the state in time for next fire season.

The application will save time by streamlining manual processes and can be integrated with other CFA applications such as IMS and TRAIN. Members can also submit their availability for a strike team via a custom-built webpage that integrates with the State Rostering Application.  The Application is already operating at Dandenong and Cranbourne, following extensive consultation and training. Eventually, it will be rolled out to the remaining integrated stations, followed by all CFA stations across the state. Once the system is fully operational, we will be better equipped to roster our people through long running incidents and campaign fires.

Tanker Restrictive Washer Fit Out

202 tankers will be fitted with a restrictive washer in the throat of the outlet after the isolating valve.  This will restrict available flow at the deck located deliveries to: 300 l/min (previously around 700lt/min). The rear and undertray deliveries are not affected. The change is in response to a safety issue related to the jet reaction associated with the potential flow of 700lt/min causing operator instability in the confined space of the deck. The size and placement of the washer has been approved following extensive trialling which indicated 300lt/min maximum flow will not restrict grass fire attack capability. The work is being undertaken by an external contractor under the supervision of Technical Asset Services. Enquiries should be directed to your local Catchment Officer.

Working as One: A Roadmap to Disaster Resilience for Australia

The Australian Strategic Policy Institute has published the above named report dated October 2014.  The report discusses a range of issues and includes 11 recommendations currently under consideration within the emergency management sector. The report is available by clicking here

Last Updated: 10 December 2015