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City of Ballarat Community Magazine October 2009
Residents urged to prepare
Council, the CFA and Department of Sustainability and Environment are
working together to ensure that communities are prepared for the fire
season. The suburbs of Mt Helen and Mt Clear have been identified as
high fire risks, however fires could occur anywhere within the municipality
so it is essential that everyone is prepared.
PREPARE. ACT. SURVIVE.
'Prepare. Act. Survive.' is the CFA's bushfire campaign. It is designed to get
Victorian's fire ready. Below is a summary of what this means:
Start thinking about what you will do on a high fire risk day or if a fire starts
close to you.
• If you don't have time to leave and a fire threatens you -- what will you
do, where will you shelter, how will you get there and what will you do if
things go wrong?
• If you are going to leave -- identify where and when you are going to go,
how you are going to get there and what you are going to take.
Don't wait for an emergency warning, act the moment fire danger is forecast
-- put your fire preparations into action. Watch for signs of fire and seek out
The safest place to be is nowhere near a fire. Being involved in a fire will be
one of the most traumatic experiences of your life.
The CFA has started holding Community Fire Ready Information Sessions.
The following issues are discussed at these meetings:
• What the risk is in your area
• Fire behaviour and house ignition
• How lives are lost and how people can protect themselves
• How you can prepare your house
• Developing a Bushfire Survival Plan
• What 'leave early' means
• Information and warning during a bushfire
The CFA is also offering to conduct a variety of Bushfire Safety Sessions.
These are presented by a trained facilitator and discuss fire prevention,
strategies, fire behaviour and local issues. These can be held as public
community meetings, private community meetings (to target groups like
senior citizens, service clubs, etc) and street meetings.
To find out when a Community Fire Ready Information Session is being held
in your area or to organise a Bushfire Safety Session phone the CFA on
A number of Community Fireguard groups are operating within the Ballarat
municipality and the CFA is keen to form new groups. The program is
designed to build self reliant communities that have the knowledge, skills
and understanding to manage their bushfire risk.
For further information phone the CFA on 5329 5500.
CLEARING NATIVE VEGETATION
The State Government has made it easier for residents to clear vegetation
around their homes in the lead up to the fire season. This is being referred
to as the 10/30 rule. The interim measure expires on 31 August 2010.
Landowners are now able to clear the following areas without a planning
• All vegetation, including trees, within 10 metres of your house.
• All ground vegetation (except for trees) within 30 metres of your house.
• All native vegetation either side of your property boundary fence to a
combined maximum width of four metres.
Exemptions to the 10/30 rule do apply and residents are encouraged to
contact Council's Statutory Planning unit on 5320 5640 for further
Below: Ballarat residents are being encouraged to clean up around their homes
in the lead up to summer. Image courtesy of CFA Public Affairs.
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