AS the Fire Danger Period finishes across most of Victoria on May 1, CFA has urged residents across the state to exercise extreme caution when burning off.
CFA Acting Chief Officer Gavin Freeman said that while fire restrictions had been extended until May 13 in District 7, 15 and 22, which take in Geelong, Ballarat and Shepparton and their neighbouring municipalities, the fire danger period would end across the rest of Victoria at 01.00am on Wednesday May 1. It has already ended in some areas in north-west Victoria.
Acting Chief Officer Freeman reminded residents to register any burn-off they were considering undertaking, and to 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 in dry and windy conditions,” Acting Chief Officer Freeman said.
“The effects of an out-of-control fire can be devastating and we want everyone to exercise extreme caution.
“We’re also reminding people to always register their burn-offs so we know what is happening in the area, especially if brigades are being called to fires.”
Landowners can register their burn-off with the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA) by calling 1800 668 511 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
“It reduces the chances of CFA brigades being called out unnecessarily if a member of the public calls about smoke or a fire in the area,” Acting Chief Officer Freeman said.
He added that people should never leave a burn-off unattended as it’s the resident’s responsibility to ensure that it does not get out of control.
“If a burn off does get out of control, call ‘000’ immediately. People should have a fire plan and prepare for the event of fire, and never be complacent.”
Keep your fire safe and legal:
- Check fire restrictions in your area and always register your burn on 1800 668 511
- Check and monitor weather conditions – particularly wind
- Warn your neighbours beforehand that there will be smoke in the air
- Leave a three-metre fire break, free from flammable materials around the burn
- Have sufficient equipment and water to stop the fire spreading
- Never leave a burn-off unattended – stay for its entire duration
- If your burn-off gets out of control, call ‘000’ immediately
For more information about burning off, go to cfa.vic.gov.au/burnoff