THE CFA is urging everyone to make themselves fully aware of the fire restrictions which are enforced during a Fire Danger Period and on days of Total Fire Ban.
This comes in the wake of Toora and Foster brigades attending a fire at Port Franklin, following a call to 000 from a passerby who had noticed smoke billowing from a property. CFA members found that a resident was burning off despite fire restrictions being in place.
Burning off is generally permitted only outside of the Fire Danger Period but within this period is illegal without a written permit issued by a Fire Prevention Officer of a public authority, the Municipal Fire Prevention Officer or by the CFA District office. The Fire Danger Period will remain in force until May 1 unless or revoked or varied.
The penalties for lighting fires illegally during the Fire Danger Period and on Total Fire Ban Days include large fines and possible imprisonment.
The CFA recommend becoming acquainted with the ‘Can I or Can’t I’ leaflet which can be downloaded from www.cfa.vic.gov.au , from CFA stations, the CFA Regional Office and local tourist information offices.
This very helpful document lists what can’t and can’t be done during a Fire Danger Period and on days of Total Fire Ban around the home, in businesses and on the farm.
The ‘Can I or Can’t I’ document lists what is allowed and what is banned during a Fire Danger Period and on a day of Total Fire Ban for activities such as having a barbecue or campfire, burning off, operating a chainsaw, trimmer or mower, welding, extracting honey from a hive, using an incinerator, and using farm machinery.
Local CFA members will have a stand at the Foster Show, and will be happy to chat with anyone requiring clarification about what is and what isn’t permitted during Fire Danger Periods and on days of Total Fire Ban. CFA members will also be happy to talk with anyone who may be thinking of volunteering with the CFA.
A spate of problems with power poles had both SP Ausnet and local CFA brigades busy last week, when four separate incidents occurred within 24 hours.
Yanakie Fire Brigade was paged on Wednesday February 12 to attend a potential fire at the southern end of Millers Road, Yanakie . An SP Ausnet crew was already in the area, having attended another power pole incident earlier in the day at Red Bluff Road, and so were very quickly on hand to cut off the power.
A cross arm on the pole had broken and the wire, without its support, had dropped and ignited a number of cypress trees. The property owner had extinguished the fire and the trees received only minor burns. Members of the Yanakie Fire Brigade remained in attendance until SP Ausnet staff were confident that there was no ongoing threat.
On Thursday February 13, a wire broke and fell from a power pole on Meeniyan-Promontory Road near Lorimer Street, Fish Creek, setting fire to a paddock which was bordered by a number of buildings.
The fire was attended by Meeniyan, Dumbalk, Fish Creek and Koonwarra CFA units who were able to quickly extinguish the fire before it reached any of the buildings.
The fourth incident involving power poles occurred on Samman Road, Fish Creek where a transformer was sparking, but fortunately the dry grass nearby didn’t ignite. SP Ausnet attended, cut off the power and repaired the transformer.