The Central Goldfields’ summer months may officially be over but local CFA are reminding residents to remain vigilant as warm weather and dry conditions continue into autumn.
The Fire Danger Rating remained very high throughout the first four days of autumn in the Central Goldfields Shire as the region braced against another heat wave.
Temperatures were in the 30s for the start of March before a brief respite over the past few days and Dunolly Fire Brigade Captain Ken Duell said locals should be aware of ongoing fire restrictions.
“Even though we’re going into autumn we’re not out of the fire season yet, everything’s still very dry and hot and people need to continue to watch what they’re doing and get their properties prepared,” he said.
“Fire restrictions will still be in place for a while. We’ll more than likely be having some more Total Fire Ban days.”
The Fire Danger Period is currently still in place for the Central Goldfields Shire, Mount Alexander Shire and Pyrenees Shire.
While the end date for the Fire Danger Period is currently scheduled by CFA for May 1, Mr Duell said with many hot days still to come the season could continue longer than expected.
“Looking at the weather at the moment, fire restrictions could continue until the end of April or into May, but that will all depend on whether we get rain or hot days,” he said.
“It doesn’t need to be an over 40 degree day to have a major fire, so it’s a matter of everyone watching what they do.”
Mr Duell said residents should stay prepared for fires and also think ahead to winter.
“Make sure you keep your property cleaned up and be prepared. Use a bit of common sense when you’re in the bush, on the farm or using power tools,” he said.
“Now that we’re through summer people should also be thinking about checking their smoke detectors and putting new batteries in because before you know it we’ll be back into winter and everyone will be lighting their fires.”
For more on this story see Page 9 of The Advertiser, Tuesday, March 12