Firefighters use favourable conditions to complete hazard reductions
Published Date: 16 May 2019
Fire agencies and land managers will take advantage of favourable weather conditions over coming days to complete a number of important hazard reduction burns across the state.
NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) Acting Commissioner Rob Rogers said autumn is traditionally when more than half of the annual burning program is completed.
“Forecast favourable conditions over the coming days have provided a welcome window of opportunity to complete some key burns,” Acting Commissioner Rogers said.
“These burns are planned well in advance and will reduce help fuel loads and give firefighters a better chance of saving lives and protecting homes in the event of a bush fire”
“Smoke from burns over the next few days and this weekend around areas including the Blue Mountains, Southern Highlands, Sutherland, Cessnock and Lake Macquarie, may result in reduced air quality as it drifts across the Greater Sydney, Central Coast, Wollongong and Newcastle regions.”
“It is a challenge striking the balance between completing this important work and not significantly impacting the community and as such, there have already been some burns rescheduled to limit the smoke impact this weekend.”
National Parks and Wildlife Service will undertake some of the larger hazard reduction burns, with the assistance of NSW RFS members, in the Lawson and Yengo National Park areas.
As these burns may produce a large volume of smoke, members of the public are reminded that they should only call Triple Zero (000) if they see a fire without a fire truck in attendance.
People in smoke affected areas should avoid outdoor activity, close doors and windows, keep pets in a protected area, remove washing from clotheslines and, if driving, slow down and turn on headlights.
Asthmatics and people with respiratory or heart conditions should take appropriate precautions, follow treatment and management plans and keep their medication on hand.
Since winter last year, more than 56,000 hectares have been treated across NSW, providing greater protection to more than 46,000 properties.
Due to an early start to the last bush fire season, only 39% of scheduled burns having been completed so far, meaning the likelihood of a greater number of planned burns expected before next summer.
Download the free Fires Near Me app, which displays the location and status of current hazard reduction burns and bush fires across NSW, information that is also on the NSW RFS website.
A full list of scheduled hazard reduction burns, interactive map and further health advice is available at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/hr.
Contact Name: State Duty Media Officer
Contact Phone: (02) 9898 1855