Tasmania is staring down the barrel of a high-fire danger day today.
It is the first for 2018, and coincidentally, is almost five years on, to the day, from the catastrophic Dunalley bushfires.
Tasmania Police and Tasmania Fire Service have banded together to create a hot day response, when both services will be on alert today, conducting “pro-active strategies” to lower the possibility of deliberately lit fires.
There is a fine line in emergency services issuing warnings for high-fire danger days: the general public needs to be informed in order to be prepared, but it also piques the interest of the habitual firebugs within the community.
It is sad that our emergency services will have to effectively door knock known arsonists on this day, and others like it, to check up on them.
Nonetheless, it is assuring to see such proactive behaviour from police and fire crews.
The Dunalley bushfires were a wake-up call for the state.
A report into the bushfire commended those personnel who were on-the-ground fighting the blaze, but said the state, as a whole, could have done more to be prepared for an emergency of that magnitude.
Five years on, it feels like we are in a better place, ahead of what is forecast to be an “elevated risk” bushfire season.
Already, for the 2017-18 summer, we’ve had scares, on the North-West, the East Coast, and most recently at George Town.
Our crews have displayed they are more than capable of responding accurately, intelligently, and effectively.
It is now time for the everyday Tasmanian to take responsibility for the bushfire safety of our state.
Resources upon resources are available from the TFS’s website.
Most councils hold bushfire preparedness forums for residents, and those who are deemed to live in bushfire-prone areas are given even more support.
In addition, the TFS regularly advises of high-fire danger days, and total fire bans.
Ask yourself, have you done enough to be prepared?
We ask of our emergency services to plan, prepare, and be ready to protect at a moment’s notice.
Have we put the same onus on ourselves?
- Visit fire.tas.gov.au for more information and resources