By Juliano Oliveira
What would be your reaction when facing a bushfire? In only one day, the state of Queensland registered more than 50 fire outbreaks due to the combination of dry weather and wind.
Residents have an important role in safeguarding their houses before a bushfire strike. Queensland Fire and Emergency Services point out that an unprepared property is not only at risk itself, but may also present an increased danger for neighbours.
The location of your residence is one of the things that determines if both you and your home are at risk from bushfire, and what kind of dangers you might experience. To mitigate the risk, the first step is to trim overhanging trees and shrubs, and mow the grass and remove cuttings which can stop the fire spreading to your home. It is also important to have a cleared area around. Materials likely to burn, such as doormats or woodpiles, must be removed. Prepare a sturdy hose or hoses that will reach all around your home. Make sure you’ve got a reliable source of water.
“Around 90% of homes destroyed in a bush fire are lost because of burning embers. Embers can travel many kilometres from the fire, so even if you’re a few blocks back from the bush you may be at risk”, says the NSW Rural Fire Service.
To be updated about the fire, the website MyFireWatch provides bushfire location information in a quickly accessible form, designed for general public use. It is the result of research collaboration between Landgate and Edith Cowan University.