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    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Fire and Emergency Services
    The Honourable Craig Crawford

    Warwick and Stanthorpe areas identified as hot-spots ahead of fire season

    Minister for Fire and Emergency Services
    The Honourable Craig Crawford

    Monday, July 02, 2018

    Warwick and Stanthorpe areas identified as hot-spots ahead of fire season

    Parts of south-west Queensland could experience a severe and prolonged bushfire season this year due to unseasonably dry conditions.

    Speaking ahead of a visit to the region tomorrow (Tuesday), Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford said the Warwick and Stanthorpe areas had been identified as high-risk areas in the region.

    “Since April there have already been about 230 bushfires in south-west Queensland, the majority of these have been in the Darling Downs,” Mr Crawford said.

    “This is abnormally high and has almost surpassed last year’s bushfire season’s numbers. The bushfire season doesn’t officially begin until August in the south-west.

    “The risk is very real, so it’s imperative that residents begin their bushfire preparations now ahead of the start of bushfire season.”

    The warning comes as figures released recently reveal the Darling Downs ranked first for Queensland’s top bushfire hotspot in the 2017 season, with about 280 incidents.

    The list compared the number of bushfires by the season, across all 17 Rural Fire Service (RFS) commands.

    “The Darling Downs region has seen more than 1,100 bushfires in the last four bushfire seasons and has been in the top five regions for bushfires every year since 2014,” Mr Crawford said.

    Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) Assistant Commissioner Stephen Smith said crews had recently battled significant bushfires in Ballandean, Dalveen and Yarraman.

    “The number of bushfires experienced in the Darling Downs during last year’s bushfire season shows that residents must be proactive to curb the threat on their properties,” Mr Smith said.

    “QFES is undertaking a number of hazard reduction activities as part of Operation Cool Burn, but bushfire mitigation is a community effort.

    “Residents should finalise preparations by raking up and removing leaves, clearing gutters, keeping lawns short, putting in fire breaks and moving flammable items away from homes and sheds.

    “If they haven’t already, residents should create a fire management plan and Bushfire Survival Plan.”

    For more information on bushfire preparedness and Bushfire Survival Plans visit www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au

    ENDS

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