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Preparing Your Property for Bushfire Season

While the management of fuel loads on public land is an important aspect of bushfire mitigation, Wingecarribee Shire Council believes that the best defence against loss or damage as a result of bushfire is a well prepared home with an adequate and well maintained asset protection zone. 

It is recommended that all property owners throughout the Wingecarribee Shire take appropriate action to prepare their own properties for the effects of bushfire.

Protect Against Ember Attacks 

Results of scientific studies conducted by the CSIRO have shown that ember attack (embers blown by the wind) was responsible for the majority of houses damaged or destroyed by bushfire. You can minimise the effect that ember attack will have on your home by undertaking a few simple tasks.

These include:

  • Regular cleaning of gutters to prevent a build up of leaves and sticks
  • Removal of flammable materials such as woodpiles, recycling crates containing paper products and dead/dry plants and grass from around your home
  • Fitting wire mesh screens to windows and doors
  • Enclosing spaces where embers could enter the structure of your home such as underfloor areas and under eaves

Implementing these simple measures will reduce the probability that embers will settle on and ignite either your home or materials adjacent to it.

Create an Asset Protection Zone

Creating an asset protection zone around your home will also reduce the chances of the fire front actually reaching your house (direct flame contact) and will reduce the effects of radiant heat.

An asset protection zone is an area of ground that has been cleared and maintained to minimise the amount of fuel available to a fire. When a fire approaches a well-prepared asset protection zone, it runs out of fuel and the intensity of the fire diminishes. In some cases a fire may even self extinguish.

An asset protection zone needs to be suited to both the vegetation surrounding your property and the aspect and slope of the land.

An asset protection zone does not need to be cleared to bare earth, but it should aim to reduce the amount of fuel available to a fire as the fire front approaches.

NSW Rural Fire Service Preparation Advice

See links below for further information regarding preparation of your property, or contact:

Wingecarribee Fire Control Centre
Telephone: (02) 4868-5500
In Person: Cnr Priestly & Etheridge Streets, Mittagong

Prepare Your Home

LinkPrepare Your Home and Property

PDFStandards for Asset Protection Zones

PDFBushfire and Your Home Factsheet

PDFAIDER Factsheet

PDFIs Your Home Fire Safe? Factsheet

Prepare Your Family

LinkPrepare yourself and your family

LinkFire Safety for Your Pets Factsheet

LinkPrepare Your Horse for Bushfire

Farm Fire Safety

LinkFarm Fire Safety

LinkGuide to Farm Fire Wise

PDFIntroduction to Farm Fire Wise

Volunteer to Protect Your Community

Community Fire Unit

A Community Fire Unit (CFU) is a team of local residents living in urban areas close to bushland who are supported by Fire & Rescue NSW (FRNSW) to enhance their safety and resilience during bushfires.

As a volunteer CFU member you will learn how to prepare yourself, your family and your home ahead of the bushfire season. You will learn how to make informed decisions about whether to leave early or stay and defend your property when bushfires threaten.

Volunteer CFU members do not fight fires, nor are they firefighters. Being a CFU member is about preparation, prevention and protection from bushfires.

LinkVolunteer - Community Fire Unit

NSW Rural Fire Service

Volunteering offers the opportunity to learn new and valuable skills that will not only assist you in your voluntary role but in day to day life and even your workplace. It is also an opportunity to meet people you wouldn't normally meet.

LinkVolunteer - NSW Rural Fire Service 

Last Updated: April 6th, 2016
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