Parks and forests visitors urged to be prepared in the heat
Friday 7 February, 2014
With severe and extreme fire conditions forecast across Victoria and a Total Fire Ban in place for the weekend, Parks Victoria and the Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) are urging visitors to parks and forests to plan carefully, and take care in the heat.
Parks Victoria’s Manager Fire & Emergency Services, Andrew Graystone said temperatures and dry conditions will lift the Fire Danger Ratings across Victoria.
"Parks and forests are great places to visit but it is important you do your homework and be prepared for the local conditions.
"Reckless and foolish behaviour in parks and forests will not be tolerated and patrols will be out making sure people are doing the right thing.
"Some parks and picnic areas are regularly closed when the forecast Fire Danger Rating is Severe, Extreme or Code Red.
"On days of Extreme and Severe Fire Danger Ratings, or when a Code Red has been declared, people should reconsider plans to visit parks and forests."
Areas that are regularly closed on a day with a Severe or Extreme Fire Danger Rating include picnic areas and gardens and in the Dandenong Ranges National Park and picnic areas in Warrandyte State Park and Plenty Gorge Park.
DEPI Agency Commander Gil Marshall said "We urge people to stay safe and keep informed. Please make sure you have a good supply of water with you and are well protected from the sun.
"With a total fire ban in place across the state campfires are not allowed. In these conditions a campfire can quickly become a bushfire."
Visitors should check the Parks Victoria website to see which parks are closed, either because of bushfire activity or because of the Fire Danger rating has been forecast to be severe or extreme.
About 15 parks are either fully or partly closed. The full list is here.
For bushfire updates:
- www.emergency.vic.gov.au for on the latest warnings and incidents and information about the fire danger rating.
- Tune to ABC Local Radio, commercial and designated community radio stations, or Sky News TV.
- Call the Victorian Bushfire Information Line (VBIL) on freecall 1800 240 667.
- Download the FireReady App or follow CFA on Twitter or Facebook.
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