PERFECT spring conditions on Wednesday have given Forest Fire Management Victoria crews a chance to kick off its burn off season with a 3.72 hectare site near Mount Buninyong the first to be set alight.
Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic) said it is deep into its preparations for the upcoming bushfire season with fuel burn offs expected to be held right across the district in the coming weeks to prepare for the warmer months.
FFMVic District Manager Jasmine Filmer said planned burns throughout the season will also be held at Blackwood, Daylesford, Beaufort, Snake Valley, Smythesdale and within the Wombat, Lerderderg and Enfield parks and state forests.
There are very limited opportunities where conditions are suitable to undertake these important burnsForest Fire Management Director Jasmine Filmer
"Reducing bushfire fuel means that when they occur, bushfires will be less intense, making it more likely that firefighters can contain them before they spread and impact on people, property and the environment," Ms Filmer said
"We take a whole-of-system approach to fuel reduction that builds on our management of threatened and vulnerable species, involving the development of ecological models and measures of ecosystem resilience under different fire regimes.
"We carry out fuel reduction through planned burning, slashing, mulching and mowing works, and creating and maintaining strategic fuel breaks. These techniques are applied under specific environmental conditions to achieve the desired outcome."
Ms Filmer said there was only a small window each year in order to conduct such burns.
"We understand it is concerning for people to see smoke soon after an active bushfire period," she said.
"If conditions become dry and stay cool across the midlands district, we expect some opportunities to undertake planned burning to become available within the next few weeks.
"There are very limited opportunities where conditions are suitable to undertake these important burns, so it is vital that we take advantage of every opportunity to complete them.
"These opportunities may occur during the school holidays, public holidays and over weekends."
For information to where planned burns are go to ffm.vic.gov.au/plannedburn