QUEENSLAND Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) has warned residents against complacency this bushfire season despite recent rain across the Sunshine Coast region.
North Coast Region (NCR) Acting Assistant Commissioner, Mark Stuart urged residents to prepare their properties, as high vegetation growth had created bushfire hazards.
“We’ve had our fair share of wet weather over the past few months, but we don’t want residents to assume it means they won’t see fires this bushfire season,” Mr Stuart said.
“It may reduce the dryness of the soil in some locations, but it also prompts vegetation growth which increases fuel loads.
“During these cooler months with less humid conditions, it doesn’t take long for vegetation to dry out and become a risk.”
NCR Rural Fire Service (RFS) Regional Manager, Peter Hollier said it was the perfect chance for residents to clear gutters, mow lawns and trim overhanging branches.
“There’s no doubt these small but important tasks go a long way in protecting your property,” Mr Hollier said.
“Regardless of whether you live on an urban or rural property, the onus is on the landholder to mitigate bushfire risk. If you own the fuel, you own the fire.
“Rural property owners should ensure firebreaks are in place, their property number is visible, and access is clear in case our trucks need to access a property to fight a fire.”
Mr Hollier said the RFS had been preparing for bushfire season by conducting critical mitigation work across the region.
“NCR RFS brigades will continue assisting property owners with hazard reduction burns to reduce fuel loads,” he said.
“Residents can also conduct their own hazard reduction burns on their land, remembering if it’s greater than two metres by two metres they should contact their local fire warden for a Permit to Light Fire.
“Quality fire breaks can help our crews get around properties during an emergency.
“Primary producers and landholders should also use fire breaks to help protect things such as sheds, farm infrastructure, pasture for their livestock, and anything else of value.”
For more information about how to prepare your home for the upcoming bushfire season, visit https://www.qfes.qld.gov.au/bushfires