During October, Mt Eliza Fire Brigade responded to a fire call with a column of smoke visible in the area. Upon arrival, our crews found an obscured and unattended burn off on a property south of Mount Eliza.
On arrival, which was first on foot, we found a large pile that was 10 x 2 metres in size with tree stumps and other furnishings with embers flying more than 10 metres into long grass. Crews assessed that the fire in its current state was unsafe and required it to be extinguished. We were unable to contact the property owner and those who lit the fire.
With limited access, our 4-wheel drive vehicle and Tanker crews were able to make access to extinguish the fire.
There were no fire hydrants nearby so our Tanker crew used a nearby dam to supply water. Using 90 metres of hose we were able to deliver water via a divider, which splits the hose into two attack lines for firefighters to extinguish the fire.
A crew of 10 firefighters used dam water and rake-hoes to extinguish the fire which took 2 hours to complete.
Although this property was legally permitted to burn-off outside the Fire Danger Period, it is important that with any fire you follow the General Fire Safety Provisions which is set by Mornington Peninsula Shire:
- Give notice to your neighbours that you are burning off
- Log your burn off by calling 1800 668 511 (to prevent unnecessary attendance by CFA or the Mornington Peninsula Shire Rangers)
- Ensure the fire is supervised at all times
- Ensure you have sufficient fire protection equipment on site at all times
- Ensure the vegetation is dead and dry prior to lighting
- Establish a fire break of no less than 3 metres cleared of all flammable materials
- Ensure at the site of the fire the wind speed does not exceed 20 kilometres per hour