During the drill, police conducted a practical evacuation of several streets in the North Warrandyte area, taking into account where the scenario fire is and determining which areas should be evacuated.
Police and SES door knock identified streets and questioned participating residents about their proposed actions if advised to evacuate. The exercise was timed to determine how long it would take to safely evacuate several streets.
Nillumbik PSA Inspector Tom McGillian said the exercise gave police and other agencies a chance to practise emergency management response in the community. “It’s important to understand the risks related to bush fire and have safety plans in place and we would encourage the community to be vigilant as well,” he said. “The starting point for bushfire safety is Prepare, Act and Survive and in high risk areas leaving early is the safest option.”
Regional Commander for CFA’s Northern and Western Metropolitan Region, John Deering, said a number of factors contributed to North Warrandyte’s high bushfire risk, including its topography and dense bushland, as well as its road network.
“Training such as this is vital to testing our joint emergency response heading into the bushfire season,” he said. “However, it is extremely important for residents to remember that being prepared and leaving early on days of high fire risk is your best chance of survival.
“As emergency services get prepared for the summer ahead, I would also urge the public to ensure they are ready to act in the event of an emergency.”
The results of the exercise will provide emergency services with crucial information, including the length of time needed to safely evacuate a street of residents during a bushfire.
Other participating agencies include The Metropolitan Fire Brigade, The State Emergency Service, The Department of Sustainability and Environment and Parks Victoria.
For more information about how to prepare your property and family for the bushfire season, please phone the Victorian Bushfire Information Line on 1800 240 667 or visit www.cfa.vic.gov.au