Victorian communities urged to plan and prepare for a dry and hot summer

30 November 2023

Recent rainfall brought temporary relief to the dry lands of Gippsland, easing the early fire threats. However, there are still concerns as above-average fuel loads persist in various regions of Victoria, setting the stage for potentially higher than average fire risks this summer.

The Australian Seasonal Bushfire Outlook for Summer (External link) was released today. The state's forecast shows fire potential, especially in areas that were not affected by the 2019-20 fires. In these areas, the strong regrowth of forests has quickly turned dry. This could mean renewed fire activity.

The outlook shows an increase in fire potential in western and central Victoria, including the Surfcoast.

However, in taller damp forests where the underlying moisture and lush green growth, there is a lower risk of fire - at least during the initial phase of summer.

While some areas across the state maintain an average fire risk, the report highlights the potential threat from drier forests, woodlands, and heathlands, both inland and coastal, particularly during periods of hot, dry, and windy weather.

Authorities will continue to monitor the conditions closely and emergency services remain well prepared for emerging risks.

The Australian Seasonal Bushfire Outlook for Summer is developed by the Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC) (External link). They are supported by the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) (External link) along with state and territory fire and land managers.

Communities are urged to remain vigilant and well-prepared throughout the summer period, maintaining a high level of awareness.

You can keep up to date with the Fire Danger Ratings on the VicEmergency app and VicEmergency website (External link)

You can also prepare by completing your fire-plan online (External link) or download a plan from the Country Fire Authority (CFA) website (External link).