Fire prevention is everyone’s business

Published on 27 November 2019

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Pyrenees Shire Council is urging residents to prepare and plan for the fire season ahead.

Council has a role in fire prevention, through the work of the Municipal Fire Prevention Officer under the CFA Act.

Council’s annual fire prevention program is well underway with roadside slashing and the annual review of the shire’s Places of Last Resort.

The MFPO inspects properties throughout the Pyrenees Shire, looking to see whether owners are maintaining appropriate levels of vegetation and reducing fuel loads, particularly in high-risk areas.

Property owners who have excess vegetation; for example large amounts of branches piled up or long grass, and debris are issued a Fire Prevention Notice.

A notice is a reminder for that property owner to reduce the fire risk at their place, helping themselves and their neighbours. Residents typically have 14 days to comply with the notice or get in touch with Council to discuss the issue.

Council Mayor Tanya Kehoe said property owners needed to continue checking previous burn offs for re-ignition.

“There was a case in Waubra where the hot and windy conditions last week stirred up a previous burn off, but thankfully it didn’t spread,” Cr Kehoe said.

“People need to be mindful of old burn offs, particularly near plantations where fire can travel underground through root systems,” she said.

The Country Fire Authority has declared the Fire Danger Period in the north of the Pyrenees Shire. The north region includes Beaufort, Snake Valley and Lake Goldsmith. Areas not in this region include Carranballac, and Stoneleigh.

Cr Kehoe said all residents of the Pyrenees needed to prepare and practice a fire plan.

“It needs to be a plan for you, your family, your property and your animals as well as take into account your trigger to enact it,” she said.

“The CFA has resources available to help you with your plan, and I would encourage you to attend any planned Fire Ready Victoria meetings scheduled in your community.”