Illegal backburning a grave concern for Rural Fire Service

The Andersons Creek fire west of Bellingen. (Sentinel Hotspots)
The Andersons Creek fire west of Bellingen. (Sentinel Hotspots)

MEMBERS of the public are reminded not to conduct their own backburns on private property.

Backburning is a firefighting technique used by fire firefighters to remove fuel ahead of a fire front in order to stop the fire's progress. If they are not carefully planned and implemented they can easily get away and spread the fire

The efforts of fire fighters in the Bellingen, Coffs Harbour and Clarence Valley local government areas are being thwarted by landholders who are conducting their own backburning operations without the knowledge of fire fighting crews crews near them.

NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) crews have carried out extensive preparatory works, carefully monitoring conditions and preparing to light backburns to deepen containment lines only to have this work hampered by landholders starting their own burns with no discussion with us.

Firefighters lives can also be unknowingly placed at risk where they are conducting operations between the fire and an unapproved backburn.

If you see fire that is unattended call Triple Zero (000). Penalties are in place for lighting fires in the bushfire danger period without a permit.

The Andersons Creek fire:

Map data 2019 Google

Map data 2019 Google

The Andersons Creek bushfire is burning west of Bellingen, 13 kilometres from Ebor.

It has reached an area in size of 11,653 hectares and is at Advice level.

The fire is listed as 'being controlled'.

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