A Total Fire Ban has been declared for five areas of NSW tomorrow, Wednesday 11 January 2017 due to forecast hot and windy conditions.
The Total Fire Ban, commencing at midnight tonight, covers the following councils:
Greater Hunter (SEVERE) – Cessnock, Dungog, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Muswellbrook, Newcastle, Port Stephens, Singleton and Upper Hunter
Greater Sydney Region (VERY HIGH) – All Sydney Metro, Blue Mountains, Gosford, Hawkesbury and Wyong
North Western (VERY HIGH) – Moree Plains, Narrabri, Walgett and Warrumbungle
Central Ranges (VERY HIGH) – Bathurst, Blayney, Cabonne, Cowra, Lithgow, Mid Western Regional, Oberon and Orange
Southern Slopes (VERY HIGH) – Boorowa, Cootamundra, Gundagai, Harden, Tumbarumba, Tumut and Young
The NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) provides the following advice.
Under Severe and Very High fire conditions:
Well prepared homes that are actively defended can provide safety during a fire
Follow your Bush Fire Survival Plan and remain vigilant
Keep informed by listening to local radio, watching television news broadcasts and monitoring www.rfs.nsw.gov.au.
Please note: NSW RFS may request that harvesting operations and other machinery use stop in grassland, paddocks and on roadsides
No fires may be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended during a Total Fire Ban. Gas and electric barbeques may be used provided certain conditions are met.
Lighting a fire on a day of Total Fire Ban attracts an on the spot fine of $2200.
The penalty for tossing a lit cigarette doubles during a Total Fire Ban from $660 to $1320.
You can report people who throw lit cigarettes from a vehicle by going to the RFS website or calling the Bush Fire Information Line on 1800 679 737.
Total Fire Ban rules and a map of current Total Fire Ban areas are at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au.