Council and CFA remind the public of the end to the fire danger period in Surf Coast Shire, with restrictions on burning off lifting from Monday 6 April.
“Burning off is now possible, but only as a last resort,” says Surf Coast Shire Council’s Manager Environment and Community Safety, Rowan Mackenzie. “We encourage residents to first consider other means of disposal, such as kerbside collection, mulching, composting and transfer stations.”
He said that local law restrictions over township areas still apply, limiting burning off of dried vegetation as only permitted on Wednesday or Saturday between 10am – 3pm. Burn offs on private property must still be conducted in accordance with Council’s Burn Off Guidelines.
CFA Commander Surf Coast, Wayne Aylmer says in the past, the end of the fire danger period has led to unnecessary callouts.
“In the past, we’ve seen spikes in callouts at the end of the fire danger period to people doing the wrong thing. This type of behaviour frustrates CFA personnel, many of whom are volunteers,” says Commander Aylmer. “Given the heightened concern around the transmission of COVID-19, these callouts put our volunteers and the public at further risk in avoidable situations.”
“We would also like to remind people of social distancing regulations,” says Commander Aylmer. “Now is not the time for social gatherings around bonfires.”
Reports of non-compliance with Stay at Home directives can be made via the Police Assistance Line on 131 444, rather than through local police stations.
“We thank the public for adhering to the rules during the fire danger period and keeping our communities safe from fire over the peak danger times,” says Mr Mackenzie. “We’re grateful people understood the risks and took personal responsibility during this time and encourage this mindset to continue even though the fire danger period has ended.”
Township areas can be found at www.surfcoast.vic.gov.au/firerestrictions and more information on fire danger ratings and restrictions can be found at https://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/home. Please also always remember to register your burnoff via ESTA on 1800 668 511.