Calls for Vic bushfire trailer cash help

By AAP Newswire

Almost 10 years after losing her son in Australia's deadliest bushfires, Carol Matthews is begging the Victorian government to fund a project to help residents prepare for disaster.

Mrs Matthews' son Sam was one of Black Saturday's 173 victims on February 7, 2009 when he died in his family's St Andrews home after it became too late to leave.

As a new fire season looms, Mrs Matthews wants her brainchild - an "emotional preparedness trailer" - finished by the 10th anniversary.

In the vehicle, people would hear how a fire develops in a home before the lights go out, the heat cranks up, fire alarms blare and smoke fills the room.

There would also be a film about a local's experience of fires.

It would travel into fire zones to educate the community about the need to prepare, help make fire plans, and give them a feel for what happens in bushfires.

"I just know it will happen again. It might not be the unprecedented bushfire but we are certainly going to have people in trouble again," Mrs Matthews said.

"It ended up that Sam was left there for about six days."

But the project is only 70 per cent finished and needs $50,000, she said.

The project, What Will You Do In The Heat of the Moment?, is unfinished after Emergency Management Victoria poorly spent the project's $250,000, Mrs Matthews said.

"EMV has said they are done with it. We actually had enough money to do this and it could have been done two years ago if we'd had good project management," she told AAP.

EMV Commissioner Andrew Crisp said the outcomes of the trailer pilot had "not met the expectations of all involved" and it would be reviewed.

"The pilot has concluded after four years of research, progressive development of theory and design, and community testing," Mr Crisp told AAP.

A Victorian government spokesperson would not say if EMV mismanaged the project, or whether an election pledge for the trailer was on the cards.

The government said it had asked EMV to evaluate the project.