This long weekend marks the official start of the Victorian snow season and while the colder weather will see a shift in fire risk, CFA is asking visitors to be safe around fire inside their homes or accommodation.
Holidaymakers and skiers who plan on making the trip to the snow fields in the coming weeks should apply the same home fire-safe behaviours they practice at home to their resort accommodation.
CFA Alpine Commander Mark Owens said the community should be reminded that fire safety is year-round, not just for summer.
“We want people to enjoy themselves, but to remember to be safe and exercise common sense around fire and heating,” he said.
“During winter and particularly the snow season, the fire risk for accommodation in the area is higher as people switch on heaters, electric blankets, and light fires more frequently to keep themselves warm.
“Alpine brigades have been undertaking training and skill maintenance ahead of the season to ensure they are ready to respond to emergencies in all conditions.
“Our brigades have been very active in the past few weeks and will continue their great work by hosting open sessions for people involved in the local tourism industry and wider community to ensure they are all prepared.
“Make simple decisions to stay safe – don’t dry your ski gear or clothes in front of an open fire, make sure you and your family know what to do in the event of a fire and never leave cooking unattended.”
On average, there are 3,000 house fires in Victoria each year. Most could be prevented by taking simple precautions.
- Always use a fire screen in front of an open fire and keep wood and other combustibles at least one metre from fire.
- Drying clothes and other items must be kept at least one metre away from all heating.
- Never leave portable heaters and fireplaces unattended; turn off heating devices before leaving home or going to sleep.
- Pay attention in the kitchen and never leave cooking unattended. Always supervise children, keep them away from the stove top and oven.
- Using damaged electrical equipment and appliances can result in a fire. Only use appliances in good working order.