It’s hard to believe that some of our fireys have been battling grass fires and burn offs over the past couple of weeks given the gloomy weather, but they certainly have.
CFA is appealing for people to take more care after brigades in the South East and North East regions have responded to several grass fires over the last few weeks.
Brigades including Tinamba, Heyfield, Maffra, Meerlieu and Monbulk have all had a taste of the summer season over the past few weeks, turning out to grass and scrub fires that started as small burn offs and resulted into a larger job for fireys.
The brigades are urging people to be careful when burning off and to not become complacent despite the lack of sunshine.
In a recent Fire Safety Preparedness Seminar, Chief Officer Steve Warrington briefed CFA members on the predicted early fire season ahead.
“We’re getting some data in from people like the CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology that give us the seasonal outlook,” said Mr Warrington.
“What that is suggesting to us is that the summer season could start earlier this year, as early as October.
“This has been almost the driest on record in rainfall deficiencies and this time last year areas of the state were in flood.
“CFA and our partners DWELP and Parks Victoria are all getting ready for an earlier fire season.
Mr Warrington said the dryer than usual winter and warmer weather has already resulted in an increase of grassfires and out of control burn offs.
“This outlook could mean for us campaign fires and a longer fire season so we need to get into a space of seasonal preparedness now.
We may not be in shorts and t-shirts yet but CFA are reminding residents to register their burn off with CFA and check the local conditions on the day.
Even if you have registered your burn, conditions can change quickly and fires can get out of control within minutes.
The effects of an out-of-control fire can be devastating and we want everyone to excise extreme caution, especially as we transition into the warmer months.