Just what we needed: bushfire season kicks off TODAY as experts warn fires could hit NSW and be even worse than last year
- 21 NSW local government areas began bushfire hazard period on Tuesday
- This brings the total number of LGAs at risk to 27 in NSW
- Firefighters fear the threat of more grass fires this season
- Minister David Elliott said it is important for communities to know the risk of wildfires
- The remaining areas of NSW will begin the dangerous period of wildfires on October 1.
The first day of spring marked the start of the bushfire season in closed-off New South Wales.
The NSW National Fire Service declared the start of the bushfire hazard period for coastal NSW from September 1, which includes 21 local government areas on Tuesday.
This brings the total number of LGAs currently experiencing an increased risk of wildfires to 27 across NSW.
The NSW National Fire Service has announced the start of the bushfire hazard period for coastal NSW from 1 September
NSW Commissioner Rob Rogers said reported grass and crop growth from the wet winter could increase the threat of grass fires
The NSW National Fire Service feared that reported increases in grass and crop growth in the wetter-than-average winter state could see more grass fires as warm temperatures arrive.
NSW Commissioner Rob Rogers said: ‘Landowners and firefighters have reported increased grass and crop growth due to the recent rain, particularly west of the mountain ranges.’
“The threat of grass fires increases as this dries out.”
NSW Police and Emergency Services Minister David Elliott said it is important that communities in these coastal areas are aware of their risk of wildfires.
“Grass fires can be very volatile and it is important that landowners take safe and practical measures to reduce their risk.”
Communities entering the wildfire hazard period must obtain a fire permit for any burning activity and must notify their local fire department and neighbors 24 hours in advance.
Communities entering the wildfire hazard period must obtain a fire permit for any burning activity and must notify the local fire department and neighbors 24 hours in advance
Elliott said, “Those who fail to notify firefighters and neighbors face fines of up to $5,500 and/or 12 months in prison, while escaped burns face penalties of up to $110,000 and/or five years in prison.”
Commissioner Rogers said it was incredibly worrying that the NSW National Fire Service has responded to more than 130 incidents of private pole escape and hazard mitigation since July 1.
Commissioner Rogers also said that while firefighters are busy preparing for bushfire season, residents should do the same.
NSW Commissioner Rob Rogers said as firefighters prepare for the coming wildfire season, residents should do the same
Now is the time to update and discuss your wildfire survival plan. Talk to your family about what you’re going to do during a fire – discuss when you’re going to leave, where you’re going, what you’re going to rake, and what you’re going to do with animals.”
The LGAs going into their bushfire hazard on Wednesday are: Muswellbrook, Singleton, Mid-Coast, Port Macquarie-Hastings, Clarence Valley, Ballina, Byron, Tweed, Nambucca, Kempsey, Bellingen, Coffs Harbour, Lismore, Richmond Valley, Kyogle, Gunnedah, Liverpool Plains, Upper Hunter, Bega Valley, Eurobodalla and Shoalhaven.
They join the LGAs of Armidale, Walcha, Uralla, Glen Innes Severn, Inverell and Tenterfield, who started the bushfire period on August 1.
The remaining areas of NSW will begin the bushfire period on October 1.
27 LGAs have now begun their bushfire hazard, while the remaining areas of NSW begin October 1