20 November 2009

Bush Fire Update and Total Fire Ban Advice

Good Evening Everyone,

Watch and Act - Hurley Heights Trail / Mount Hay Creek Fire Fire Update 20/11/09 20:45
NSW Rural Fire Service (NSWRFS) firefighters are attending to a number of fires burning in remote and rugged terrain within the Blue Mountains and Lithgow area.
A Section 44 Bushfire Emergency has been declared for the Lithgow and Blue Mountains Local Government Areas. See http://bluemountains.rfs.nsw.gov.au/dsp_more_info.cfm?CON_ID=8790&CAT_ID=76 for more details.

Total Fire Ban
On Saturday, hot, dry and windy conditions are expected to increase fire dangers to dangerous levels in parts of NSW.

A TOTAL FIRE BAN has been declared for tomorrow, Saturday 21 November 2009.
The Commissioner, NSW Rural Fire Service will TOTALLY BAN THE LIGHTING OF FIRES from midnight tonight [Thursday 19th of November] until midnight tomorrow night [Friday 20th of November] in the following NSW Fire Areas:
Greater Hunter, Central Ranges, Northern Slopes, North Western,
Upper Central West Plains, Lower Central West Plains,
Far Western, Greater Sydney Region.
The Blue Mountains Local Government Area is part of the Greater Sydney Region Fire Area.
The Fire Danger Rating for Greater Sydney Region is Severe [50-74].
The NSW Rural Fire Service warns that any bush fire that starts has the potential to threaten lives and destroy homes.

What does this mean?
I'm glad you asked. Today will be warm, dry and windy. This combination can effect fire behaviour and cause smaller fires to increase in size and intensity quite rapidly. The lower humidity and strong winds are of great concern.

Volunteer Firefighters from the NSW Rural Fire Service will be on stand-by at a number of locations throughout the area from 10am Thursday morning.

What can I do?
Be aware. If a bushfire does get going, the situation can change very quickly.

* If you plan to leave finalise your options and leave early on the day
* Only stay if your home is well prepared and you can actively defend it.
* Prepare for the emotional, mental and physical impact of defending your property - if in doubt, leave

During days of Very High or Extreme Fire Danger, and on days where a Total Fire Ban has been declared, we will be doing our best to keep everyone informed of any major incidents that might impact on our community. This may not necessarily be a fire in the Blue Mountains, but even a fire in another area can send significant amounts of smoke in our direction.

If you are away from your email, but have internet access, you can keep yourself informed if anything is happening by checking our Updates Blog - http://ruralfirebm.blogspot.com/ - where a copy of every message send out to this list will automatically be posted.

For more information about Total Fire Bans, visit http://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/dsp_content.cfm?cat_id=1109.

If you see a fire, report it immediately by calling '000' and asking for the Fire Brigade!