A Total Fire Ban (TFB) has been declared for the Mallee and Wimmera tomorrow, Monday 13 December 2021.
Tomorrow’s conditions in the Mallee and Wimmera will be hot with temperatures reaching into the mid to high 30s, with strengthening north westerly winds forecast early before a blustery southerly change crossing the state throughout the day. There is also a low risk of dry lightning in the area.
A Fire Danger Rating of Severe is forecast for the Mallee and Wimmera tomorrow, with the Bureau of Meteorology also issuing a fire weather warning in those districts. A High Fire Danger Rating forecast for Northern Country, North Central, Central, and South West, and Low-Moderate for the remainder of the state.
CFA Acting Chief Officer Garry Cook said the hot temperatures, strong winds, and the possibility of dry lightning are the key concerns in the Mallee and Wimmera tomorrow.
“While the Total Fire Bans are in place for the Mallee and Wimmera tomorrow, there is going to reasonably warm and windy conditions across Northern and Western Victoria as well,” he said.
“We know people may have been preparing their properties and burning off recently, so we’re asking anyone who’s had a fire in the last few days to really make sure those burns are completely extinguished and totally cold by tonight.
“Tomorrow is a timely reminder for people right across Victoria that summer is here, and people should revisit their bushfire survival plans and make sure they’re ready to act.
“People need to take heed of the conditions and adhere to Total Fire Ban restrictions.”
While this year’s fire season outlook indicates a lower risk of prolonged bushfires, grass and crop fires remain a high risk across the state after average-above average rainfall and strong fuel growth.
“Overall, we’ve had milder conditions leading into this fire season, but we can’t afford to be complacent about these hot and windy days where the fire danger spikes.
“Grass and crop fires are prevalent this season and can move at speeds of up to 25km per hour and jump highways,” Acting Chief Officer Cook said.
A Total Fire Ban means no fire can be lit in the open air or allowed to remain alight from 12.01am to 11.59pm on the day of the Total Fire Ban.
Strict rules also apply to the operation of farm machinery, chainsaws and lawn mowers, and residents in Mallee and Wimmera in particular are encouraged to take extreme care tomorrow.
Farmers undertaking harvesting are encouraged to follow a Voluntary Grain Harvesting Guide developed by CFA and Victorian Farmers Federation that recommends ceasing harvesting at suggested triggers.
Victorians should also make sure they have access to more than one source of information in the event of an emergency, including:
- ABC local radio, commercial and designated community radio stations, or Sky News
- The VicEmergency App, website www.emergency.vic.gov.au and Hotline 1800 226 226
Victorians can find out “Can I or Can’t I?” information at cfa.vic.gov.au/can or by calling VicEmergency Hotline on 1800 226 226. All burn-offs should be registered online at firepermits.vic.gov.au or with the VicFire Burn-off notification line on 1800 668 511.