Victoria experienced a significant fire season over the 2012-13 Fire Danger Period (FDP). Firefighters responded to more than 4,400 bush and grass fires between December and March. Of these 24 were classified as significant including those at Chepstowe, Aberfeldy, Harrietville, Donnybrook, Dereel and in the Grampians.
Many of the fires over the FDP were intense, fast moving, and ran through the night. Total Fire Bans were declared in all or parts of the state on 16 days between 1 December 2012 and 31 March 2013. Initial attack was a key factor to success and included the extensive use of firefighting aircraft to support ground crews who performed exceptionally well.
The primary purpose of the 2012-13 review was to identify and validate existing operational policy, processes and practices applied during this period and identify opportunities for continuous improvement associated specifically with the management of bushfire.
The review identified a number of opportunities for further improvement and these were addressed ahead of the 2013-14 FDP through targeted projects, briefings or exercises. Those not specifically addressed were analysed and assigned to responsible parties for future consideration to build on the knowledge gained through the review process.
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