CFA Hume regional controller Rob Van Dorsser is reminding the community that the Fire Danger Period (FDP) is still in force across the Hume region.
‘‘Over the past week CFA brigades across the Hume Region have been called to multiple incidents involving illegally lit fires,’’ Mr Van Dorsser said.
‘‘There may be smoke visible in the air due the DELWP and CFA planned burns or approved permit burn-offs, but this does not mean is it safe to burn-off without a permit.
‘‘The current conditions across the region are still conducive to escaping grassfires, which can start and spread quickly.
‘‘We ask residents to be patient and consider that there are heavy penalties that apply for breaking the law — and being unaware is no excuse.
‘‘Calls to fires started by burn-offs without a permit take firefighters away from workplaces, families and potentially genuine emergencies.
‘‘These out-of-control burn-offs have been a major headache for brigades, so expect any fire you start to be fully investigated by police.’’
During the FDP fires cannot be lit in the open air without a written permit from CFA or a Municipal Fire Prevention Officer.
Fire restrictions are based on local conditions and take into account fuel moisture, fuel loads, grassland curing, weather and rainfall.
‘‘Even if you have a permit to use over the Fire Danger Period, make sure you read the conditions carefully,’’ Mr Van Dorsser said.
‘‘Failing to follow just one of those conditions may leave you open to prosecution.’’
‘‘Also please don’t forget to also check with your municipality about your local laws.
‘‘This is very important — we don’t want any fires.’’
●Victorians can find out ‘‘Can I or Can’t I?’’ information at cfa.vic.gov.au/can or by phoning VicEmergency Hotline on 1800226226. All burn-offs should be registered with the VicFire Burn-off notification line on 1800668511.
Keep your burn off
safe and legal
●Check fire restrictions in your area and always register your burn;
●Check and monitor weather conditions — particularly wind;
●Warn your neighbours beforehand that there will be smoke in the air;
●Stay in attendance the whole time your burn is going; and
●Have sufficient equipment and water to stop the fire spreading.