Drier forests, woodlands and heathlands are also at risk of fires with the onset of hot and dry weather conditions.
While there has been a slower start to the fire season, Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic) crews have been in action in several bushfires, often working alongside our colleagues at the Country Fire Authority.
One of the call-outs involving our crews was a fire on Snake Island, part of the Nooramunga Marine and Coastal Park in south Gippsland.
Limited access to the island and the need for a quick response meant our rappel team from the Heyfield depot were first into the fire zone. Ably supported by a crew from the Yarram depot, they quickly brought the fire under control.
We don’t expect many long-running or large forest fires this summer; however, we are well prepared with all our seasonal firefighters trained and our air fleet ready to support Victorian firefighting ground crews when the need arises.
Even though conditions have been wetter through most of the state last year, FFMVic has continued to manage bushfire risk on public land.
By investing in prevention, we aim to protect people, property and the environment by reducing the risk and impact of major bushfires.
We will always look for opportunities year-round to conduct planned burns that will protect people, and our environment – including forests, their wildlife and biodiversity – from bushfires this summer and in the drier years to come.
We burn to the conditions, not the calendar. Some of the burns that didn’t go ahead during spring may now take place this summer if conditions are right and it’s safe to do so. Others could take place in autumn.
I would like to thank all staff who’ve been working hard to get us ready for summer and the rest of the year.
And I would also like to thank all those who have been heavily involved in the flood response over the past 3 months. The work and support you have provided to those communities affected have been truly amazing.
And finally, a reminder to those Victorians looking forward to getting outdoors to explore our state forests and parks over the school holiday period. You can also help manage bushfire risk by taking care if lighting campfires.