South West CFA authorities are reminding landowners that fire restrictions are still in place across Warrnambool, Moyne, Southern Grampians shires, and burning off is prohibited without a permit.
While conditions are cooling and there has been some recent rain in these areas, it’s still not yet safe, or legal, to conduct private burn offs without an approved permit.
CFA District 5 Assistant Chief Fire Officer (ACFO) Richard Bourke said while some areas in these municipalities are beginning to green up, residents must adhere to the Fire Danger Period conditions while it is still in place.
“We’re urging the community to use common sense and take responsibility for preventing fires,” he said.
“Residents may have spotted visible smoke from recent planned burns across parts of the South West, however these are being undertaken with valid permits.”
ACFO Bourke said the grassfire risk remains throughout autumn and fires can still take hold and spread quickly in the right conditions.
“No burning off is permitting during the Fire Danger Period without a Permit to Burn,” he said.
“Lighting a fire in the open without a permit while fire restrictions are in place is an offence and can bring significant penalties.”
Landowners who wish to obtain a Permit to Burn during the Fire Danger Period can apply through the Fire Permits Victoria website at www.firepermits.vic.gov.au.
There are very strict conditions attached to these permits and the liability sits with the permit holder to ensure they always act safely.
Monitor weather conditions and do not burn-off during days of high winds. More information about burn-off restrictions specific to your area can be found by consulting your local council.
More information and restrictions are published at www.cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/fire-danger-period-restrictions.
Victorians can find out “Can I or Can’t I?” information at www.cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/can or by calling VicEmergency Hotline on 1800 226 226.
Fire Danger Period information:
- A written permit is required to burn off grass, undergrowth, weeds or other vegetation during the FDP. This permit may be issued by the Municipal Fire Prevention Officer or the CFA District Office. You can apply for a permit at firepermits.vic.gov.au.
- Lighting a fire in the open without a permit is an offence and can bring a penalty of over $21,800 and/or 12 months imprisonment. Barbeques and fires for cooking and warmth do not require a permit, but must be lit in properly constructed fireplaces (to view complete conditions visit cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/can