TAKE CAUTION: Tenterfield mayor Peter Petty, pictured, meets firefighters at Drake earlier this year.
TAKE CAUTION: Tenterfield mayor Peter Petty, pictured, meets firefighters at Drake earlier this year. Marc Stapelberg

Mayor pleads for safety ahead of fire season

WHEN the Gulf Road fire tore through the village of Torrington earlier this month, it destroyed eight homes and forced people to flee for their lives.

And unfortunately, the NSW Rural Fire Service is warning this is only the beginning of what will be a long, dangerous fire season.

According to the firefighting organisation, more than 300 homes are now confirmed destroyed following the bush fires which have affected large parts of NSW since November 8.

A total of 303 homes have been destroyed, bringing the total number of homes destroyed this bush fire season to 412.

With unprecedented fire conditions frighteningly already evident early in the summer fire season, Tenterfield mayor Peter Petty is urging residents of the Tenterfield Shire to take action now to ensure their safety in the dangerous months ahead.

"On behalf of the community, I sincerely thank our brave and wonderful fire crews and the many volunteers and council staff who are working tirelessly both in our shire and nearby, to ensure the safety of life and property in whatever capacity,” he said.

"We are all suffering from the dry, hot, smoky conditions and the stresses relating to lack of water, drought and fires.

"We are in trying, difficult circumstances and I urge everyone be kind to one another and look out for each other.”

Cr Petty said the NSW RFS website includes a number of easy things you can do to ease your fire threat.

"There are a number of things you can do,” he said.

Some simple, potentially life-saving tips include:

  • Make a fire plan to ensure every member of the family knows what to do should a fire approach your property
  • Have an escape plan and a definite time to activate it
  • Include the safety of your pets and livestock in your fire plan
  • Contact your neighbours so that you can assist each other - have their number on your phone
  • Clean up around your home and sheds - whipper snip any long grass and remove rubbish
  • Ensure your pumps and hoses are in good, working condition

Cr Petty said "if you are asked to evacuate, please do so”.

He said there are also a number of resources available for residents.

For NSW residents, download the Rural Fire Service Fires Near Me App or visit www.rfs.nsw.gov.au.

For Queensland residents, visit the Queensland Fire & Emergency Services website www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au.



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