Summer ends but the fire restrictions remain
Although summer officially ends on 28 February, the Fire Danger Period doesn’t!
CFA North West Region Operations Manager Mark Gilmore stated “Even though there was rain during January, many areas are extremely dry leaving a high fire risk which has resulted in no decision being made yet to lift restrictions.”
Fire restrictions limit the ways you can use fire on your property, including machinery which may produce sparks or flames. It’s everyone’s responsibility to prevent fires from starting and spreading. Any fire can quickly threaten lives and property given the right conditions.
Mr Gilmore pointed out “You’re at risk of fire this summer if you live near bush, grassland or coastal scrub. You need to understand your fire risk and know what to do. Preventing fires is something that every member of the community should see as their responsibility” and went on to add that “Fire Danger Periods are based on local conditions and take into account fuel moisture, fuel loads, grassland curing, weather and rainfall.”
“Talk to your family and friends about the fire risk where you live and make plans for what you’ll do on a hot, dry, windy day.”
Mr Gilmore commented that “Fire restrictions remain in force for a very good reason – to prevent fires from starting and be aware that burning off cannot be carried out under any circumstances during the Fire Danger Period (FDP).
CFA North West Region Community Education Coordinator Paul Tangey stated "leaving early is the safest option to protect yourself and your family. If the Fire Danger Rating is Code Red, Extreme or Severe, you’re risking your life if you wait and see what happens.”
Mr Tangey reminded people “Don’t rely on an official warning to leave. Bushfires can start quickly and threaten homes and lives within minutes.”
He also pointed out that “It’s up to you to stay informed. Check the Fire Danger Rating for your area every day and act to protect yourself and your family by leaving early on hot, dry, windy days. Don’t wait and see.”
“Leaving late is risky, it means that a drive that normally takes a few minutes could take hours and you may not be able to get out at all.”
Mr Tangey recommended two vital sources of information to explain which part of Victoria you are in and the regulations around what activities are permitted, are the Total Fire Ban Districts map and Can I or Can’t I brochure.
Crime Stoppers in partnership with the emergency services, media and local communities, work hard in raising awareness and encouraging reporting of bushfire arson through the annual Bushfire Arson and Reckless Fires campaign – Any information is confidential, so if you see something, say something by calling 1800 333 000.
Leave and Live!
Author: District 2 News