The risk of bushfires in some parts of Western Australia has been declared above-normal for this fire season by the Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre.

Residents should be aware that the bushfire risk isn’t just contained to areas of dense trees and forest; bushfires can also start in scrub and grassland. In metro Perth, areas most at risk lie in the Perth Hills and bushland along the Darling Scarp.

The Stoneville bushfire earlier this year was the  most costly on record for WA, with approx. $63-million damage*.

Glen Walker, Manager Home Claims said: “The January 2014 Stoneville bushfire was a stark reminder of the devastation that can occur in catastrophic heat-wave conditions. Don’t be complacent about bushfire preparation for this summer; a bit of effort could well make the difference in saving your life and home”

Even if your home is some distance from a bushfire, embers can travel up to 30km with the wind and enter your home through gaps in the roof, windows and doors and also through evaporative air conditioners.

Bushfire season runs from around November to April in the southern half of WA so if your home is in or near an at risk area, you should be prepared.

The Department of Fire and Emergency Services recommends you:

  • Clear gutters and keep your roof clear of dried leaves
  • Close in the eaves and other gaps that lead into the roof or under the floors
  • Install metal fly screens on your windows and vents, and stainless steel open weave mesh over your evaporative air conditioner
  • Create and maintain a minimum two metre gap between trees and your home
  • Store any kind of fuel and flammable material away from your home in a cleared area

RAC Insurance has a bushfire fact sheet available for download, to assisting in getting your property bushfire ready.

 

Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre’s (CRC) Southern Australia Seasonal Bushfire Outlook for 2014-15 www.bnhcrc.com.au

Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre’s (CRC) Southern Australia Seasonal Bushfire Outlook for 2014-15 www.bnhcrc.com.au

*Source: Insurance Council of Australia