Fire vigilance urged

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Fire vigilance urged

As the Limestone Coast looks skyward for rain, the South Australian Country Fire Service (CFS) is urging the community to be vigilant when conducting burn offs on their properties.

Today’s temperatures will be elevated and accompanied by strong northerly winds, increasing the fire risk across many parts of South Australia.

CFS has placed five aircraft on standby to support firefighters in the event of a fire escalating, including three Single Engine Airtankers (SEATs) and two observational aircraft.

In the past two days alone, there have been more than 20 fires resulting from private burn offs getting out of hand – 11 on Monday and nine fires as of 2pm today.

This follows an extremely busy April and May for CFS volunteers who attended a significant number of out of control burns offs, where property owners were caught off guard or were not properly prepared with fire breaks or ample water supplies.

State Duty Officer Ben Pettman said the expected strong winds, warmer temperatures, and dry fuel loads should send a strong warning to communities to remain vigilant while the threat of bushfire remains.

“We know bushfires can start as late as May so, while CFS aircraft and volunteer firefighters will be ready to respond if a fire starts, it’s important the community play their part to reduce the risk of rural fires,” he said.

“Our message to the community is to delay any planned burn offs until after the cool, wet change comes through on Thursday.

“For anyone who recently conducted a burn off, we encourage you to check it has been fully extinguished. For large piles, we suggest pulling apart the pile with a rake or similar equipment to ensure there are no hot pockets and to extinguish the pile using water.”

South Australian communities are also encouraged to stay informed tomorrow using multiple sources and have a plan in case a bushfire starts.

For more information, visit the CFS website.

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