Bushfire plans urged after outlook released

SOPHIE HAWKINS

Rockingham and Mandurah residents have been urged to prepare their homes and create a bushfire survival plan due to reports the bushfire outlook for the area is above average levels.

The Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre released its Southern Australia seasonal bushfire outlook this week and FESA’s assistant chief operations officer Chris Arnol said it was vital residents familiarised themselves with bushfire procedures to avoid tragedy this season.

‘‘Southern WA endured a difficult bushfire season last year, and we expect another bad season this year,’’ he said.

‘‘Know your risk and take action — any location near bushland is at risk of a potentially devastating bushfire.’’

Mr Arnol said bushfires could affect anyone in the region and preparation was vital.

‘‘You cannot afford to be complacent and think that it will not happen to you. You have to take action to protect your home and family, and, given the outlook, now is the best time to get started,’’ he said.

‘‘Have a bushfire survival plan and practice it with your family.

Know what you will do during hot weather and when a fire starts.

‘‘Give firefighters a fighting chance by preparing your property for bushfires.’’

Mr Arnol said during a major bushfire firefighters working to stop the fire may not be able to defend individual properties.

For more bushfire information, visit www.fesa.wa.gov.au/bushfire