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The 2012-13 Fire Season - an outlook

Friday, 9th November 2012

The 2012-13 Fire Season - an outlook

Michael Gallacher, NSW Minister for Police and Emergency Services has warned “The coming fire season has the potential to be one of the worst in many years and I urge members of the community in those fire prone areas to heed the RFS warnings and get ready now. Serious bush and grass fires have already affected properties, now is the time for the public to prepare for the coming bushfire season”.

The Bushfire CRC seasonal bushfire outlook shows large areas of southern Australia are facing above average fire potential for the 2012-13 season. The above average forecast is due to the abundant growth of grass from the high amount of rainfall received from La Nina events over the past 2 years. Elsewhere across southern Australia, the fire potential is considered to be average for 2012-13, but average fire conditions can still produce fast running fires.

The 2012-13 fire season has started early in NSW according to the NSW Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons, as NSW is hit with high temperatures and strong winds. Commissioner Fitzsimmons has said fires had already killed stock and destroyed property such as fences, sheds, tractors and electricity poles and wires. “We estimate that this weekend (October 20-21) more than $1 million of damage was sustained across NSW,” Commissioner Fitzsimmons said. “This is a stark reminder of the reality of bush fire season and the damage fires can cause. Less than three weeks into this year’s season NSW RFS volunteers have already attended 373 fires, compared to 180 in the same period last year. It is clear that this fire season arrived early, and with hotter, drier weather predicted, people need to get ready now, not later" Commissioner Fitzsimmons said.

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