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Early bushfire warning

Fire services are urging Victorian farmers and landowners to start preparing bushfire plans after a report revealed the potential for fast-moving grass fires this summer.
Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre’s Southern Australia Seasonal Bushfire Outlook shows large areas of drying grass across the continent and an increased possibility for above-normal bushfire activity.
Fire Services Commissioner Craig Lapsley said the outlook was consistent with Victorian fire service expectations.
“It is early to be definitive about our summer fire conditions. However, early indicators shouldn’t be ignored,” Mr Lapsley said.
“Following heavy rain last summer and a drier than usual August, it is clear that this summer there is a potential for large grass fires. When there is more grass you have fires that can burn hotter and faster.
“We are asking people to start acting now in preparing their land for these conditions.”
Country Fire Authority chief officer Euan Ferguson said rain this year had changed the outlook for 2011-12 from previous seasons.
“Having endured over 10 years of drought, the outlook for 2011-12 is quite different,” Mr Ferguson said.
“Across Victoria, soils are moist and at maximum capacity. The weather is warming, heralding a time of vigorous grass and crop growth and there is a high probability of significant grass fuel loads this summer.
“I am concerned that we face a significantly higher grassfire risk than we have seen in Victoria for many years.”
Department of Sustainability and Environment will use a controlled burn program to reduce bushfire risk.

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Posted on Aug 31 2011

Posted by on Aug 31 2011. Filed under Environment, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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