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Hot weather poses fire risk for all Melbourne residents

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28 Jan 2009
The MFB is urging the public to not become complacent in regards to fire prevention as the weather heats up this week.

In particular, Victorians living in Melbourne’s urban fringe areas are being warned to be especially vigilant about the threat of grass and scrub fires during the onset of hot weather. On average, the MFB attends over 200 grass and scrub fires in the Melbourne metropolitan area each summer.

The MFB is also urging businesses in urban fringe suburbs of Melbourne and in regional centres to ensure that their factories, warehouses and buildings are properly maintained and prepared for the threat of fire.

MFB Commander of Community Education Frank Stockton said that these kinds of fires predominately occur where urban areas interface with parklands and substantial forested areas.

“They range in size from small to extensive, and in the past have caused the destruction of many hectares of grassland and created thousands of dollars property damage. These fires sometimes present a direct threat to houses and businesses adjacent to these areas.

“In these harsh drought conditions and due to upcoming hot weather this week, it is timely for the MFB to remind all Melbourne residents and businesses of some simple precautions they can take,” he said.

The MFB is advising the public to:

  • ensure all rubbish stored outside is disposed of properly and not left to accumulate
  • not store raw materials, combustibles and stock close to dry scrub and grassland
  • keep lawns cut and remove leaves from gutters
  • remove any overhanging branches and overgrown vegetation
  • keep timber and rubbish away from fences, particularly where the fence borders any
    bush or grassland
  • have garden hoses connected to taps and ensure the hoses can reach all parts of
    your property
  • practise a fire escape plan
  • if you choose to stay, ensure that you inspect your property for fire spread closely
    once the fire front passes and if you choose to leave, leave early.

For more information on summer fire safety, visit www.mfb.vic.gov.au.

For further information or to arrange an interview, please contact the Media and Communications Department on (03) 9665 4394 or media@mfb.vic.gov.au

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