The statutory Bush Fire Danger Period (BFDP) will commence on Wednesday 1 October 2014. One-third of the State has already commenced its danger period due to dry conditions.
The Bureau of Meteorology advises that the outlook through to December indicates drier than average conditions across eastern and northern NSW and warmer than normal temperatures for the entire State.
It is vitally important that everyone understands the bushfire risk and prepares for it, particularly considering predictions of hot and dry conditions in the upcoming months.
While commending the work of fire-fighters and emergency services agencies communities also have a role to play, particularly through making Bush Fire Survival Plans. Protection is a shared responsibility, and each member of the community needs to be aware of how to prepare themselves and their homes.
You can find out how to make a Bush Fire Survival Plan at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au. It’s quick, it’s simple, and it could save your life.
Fire & Rescue NSW Commissioner Greg Mullins said it is also important for people who do not live close to bushland to make preparations. Embers from bushfires can travel great distances, across several streets or even up to 20 kilometres in the worst of weather conditions and when they land they can start new fires.
Fines have also increased in the lead up to the Bush Fire Danger Period. Discarding a lit cigarette now carries an increased fine of $660, which doubles to $1320 during a Total Fire Ban.
The statutory BFDP for NSW ends on Tuesday 31 March, 2015.
Further BFDP information is available at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/BFDP.