Know the campfire rules and stay safe during school holidays
Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic) is urging campers in Gippsland to be vigilant and follow the campfire safety rules during the spring school holidays.
FFMVic Acting Assistant Chief Fire Officer, Alison Ireland said campfire negligence was a concern in the region and officers would be patrolling to make sure people are doing the right thing.
“School holidays are always a busy time as we see an increase in visitors to the region,” Ms Ireland said.
“We want people to get out there and enjoy our parks and State forests but make campfire safety a priority for their trip by knowing what they can and can’t do.
“We have already had some incidents of unattended campfires in Gippsland in the past three months.
“Unattended campfires can lead to bushfires, placing the community and firefighters at risk, as well as potentially damaging the environment and affecting industry and recreational users of our public land.
“It takes a lot of time, effort and personnel to respond to a fire, so when campfires escape and could have been prevented by following the rules, it’s very frustrating.
“Authorised officers will be patrolling our parks and forests over the holiday period to ensure campers are doing the right thing and to educate visitors on campfire safety.
“We’re asking people to be vigilant and if they see a campfire that doesn’t look right or is unattended, then to call 000.
“It’s everyone’s responsibility to ensure they follow the campfire safety rules.”
Campers are urged to obey the following campfire regulations, if it’s not a Total Fire Ban day:
Use a purpose-built fireplace where provided, otherwise light your campfire in a trench at least 30cm deep. Ensure the trench is no larger than one square metre in size and the area around the trench is cleared of flammable material up to three metres in all directions, including above the campfire.
Branches and logs on your campfire must be less than one metre long – keep your fire just big enough for warmth and cooking.
Never leave a campfire alight or unattended. You must maintain a 50-metre line of
sight of the campfire at all times.
An adult must be present at all times when the campfire is alight.
Ensure your campfire is completely extinguished using water not soil.
Wednesday, 26 September 2018 | Media contact: Rachel Dawkins 0407 821 153
Under the Forest Act 1958, on the spot fines of up to $484 can be issued for people breaching campfire safety rules and a person can face a maximum penalty of up to $16,119 if the matter is prosecuted in Court. For more information go to https://www.ffm.vic.gov.au/permitsandregulations/
fire-restrictions-andregulations or contact 136 186.