Fire season warning for Victorian farmers

One of the wettest springs on record is feeding Victoria's fire fuel load, as farmers in the state's northwest prepare for a delayed harvest.

The Country Fire Authority, which responds to roughly 200 harvesting-related fires each year, is warning them to take extra precautions.

"As the vegetation dries out, the fire risk increases and unfortunately each season we see machinery and vehicles start fires in different parts of the state," CFA Chief Officer Jason Heffernan said on Wednesday.

"Awareness is the key to avoiding harvester fires."

Widespread floods have left many Victorian farmers with lost crops, sodden fields or flooded grazing land.

"For those fortunate enough to harvest this season, farmers must test their equipment prior to use to help avoid situations such as harvester fires," Victorian Farmers Federation grains president Ashley Fraser said.

"Safety must always remain our top priority."

Maintaining, inspecting and cleaning machinery was essential, the CFA said, and farmers should keep a close eye on grass and straw build-up.

"Activities like harvesting, grinding, welding, slashing or mowing can quickly ignite fires in hot, dry conditions and they can become dangerous very quickly," Mr Heffernan said.

The CFA reminded farmers to give machinery regular breaks and to carry fire suppression equipment such as knapsack spray pumps and water fire extinguishers.

"Farmers are often the first responders to grass fires and they understand the risks and seriousness of operating machinery in hot, dry conditions," Mr Heffernan said.

"Being fire safe on your farm should be part of any fire plan you have."