Curtain Closes on Quietest Fire Season in a Decade
NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) Commissioner Rob Rogers said this bush fire season had been welcome change in terms of fire activity, property damage and hours committed by volunteer firefighters.
“Firefighters have responded to just over 5500 bush and grass fires burning 30,963 hectares across NSW, considerably less than the 11,400 fires and 5.5 million hectares lost last season”, Commissioner Rogers said.
“There has been just 11 days of total fire bans compared to 60 days last season, marking the quietest bush fire season since 2010/11.
Commissioner Rogers said that despite the low level of fire activity this season, our members had been kept busy over recent weeks assisting flood affected communities across the state.
“Time and time again when called upon, our members have stepped up to help.
“As communities up and down the coast were inundated by flood waters, our firefighters were there to help, both on the ground and in the air.
“I am humbled by their want to serve locally and the broader NSW community.
“To see hundreds of our firefighters travelling across the state to help communities in need is testament to their dedication and commitment.
Commission Rogers said that despite the low instances of bush and grass fires across the season high grass fuel loads remained west of the divide.
“Over the coming weeks and months crews will begin hazard reduction burning when weather opportunities are more favourable to reduce these fuel loads.
“It is vital for people living near Bush Fire Prone Land to not become complacent and to ensure they take the time now to clear, prepare and maintain their properties.”
While Fire Permits are not required outside the BFDP, property owners conducting private hazard reduction burns are usually required to have a Hazard Reduction Certificate before lighting up. Hazard Reduction Certificates are free and can be obtained from NSW RFS Fire Control Centres.
“While firefighting agencies will be looking to conduct as many hazard reduction activities as possible, I encourage landholders to do the same.” said Commissioner Rogers.
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