Severe fire danger has been forecast in parts of the state tomorrow as Victoria braces for temperatures in the high 30s and strong winds.
The Mallee, Northern Country and North Central weather districts are all in Severe while the remainder of Victoria, except East Gippsland, is in Very High Fire Danger.
Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley said a Severe Fire Danger Rating means there will be hot, dry and windy conditions and if fires start and told hold, they may be uncontrollable.
“February is traditionally our most dangerous in a fire sense because it is when the State is most dry and when fires can do serious damage,” he said.
“While there has been some rain across parts of Victoria, many areas remain dry, particularly in central and western Victoria.
“It is also important to remember that north of the divide it has been hot for days and even weeks and we’re only in the middle of February – we could see a fire season run for many more weeks yet.”
As the weather heats up, many Victorians will also be attending major events across Victoria, including the Southern 80 Ski Race event at Echuca / Moama.
“We want Victorians to enjoy these events and all that Victorian tourism and recreation has to offer, however, please make sure you have done some pre planning and stay informed to make your weekend is a safe one,” Mr Lapsley said.
“If you’re by the water, play it safe. Look out for your friends and remember, alcohol and water activities are a dangerous mix. If you’re heading to the beach, swim between the red and yellow flags, at beaches patrolled by lifesavers.”
You can find these https://beachsafe.org.au/
Total Fire Bans have been declared in the Mallee, Northern Country, North East and North Central districts which means campfires cannot be lit and solid and liquid fuel barbecues and ovens are also banned.
For more information about what you can and can’t do on a day of Total Fire Ban, visit cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/can/
Parks Victoria and Victoria Police will conduct joint patrols of campsites along the Murray River between Echuca and Torrumbarry this weekend, to check on fire safety and curb any anti-social behaviour.
“The key is to think about where you will be this weekend – what the fire danger will be, what the local conditions are and what your plan will be during an emergency,” Mr Lapsley said.
“Know what the warnings mean and where you can get information to help you make informed decisions about your safety.”
- See the latest warnings and advice by visiting emergency.vic.gov.au
- Tune to ABC Local Radio, commercial and designated community radio stations, or Sky News TV.
- Call the Victorian Bushfire Information Line (VBIL) on freecall 1800 240 667.
- Download the FireReady App and set up a Watch Zone or follow VicEmergency on Twitter (#VicFires) or Facebook.