Victoria’s emergency services prepare for busy fire season

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Victorian fire agencies are preparing for a challenging fire season withmulti-agency briefings and exercises starting across Victoria.

Eighteen sessions will be held during September and October to ensure allagencies are working together to prepare for the upcoming summer fireseason.
Minister for Police and Emergency Services and Bushfire Response Kim Wellssaid the fire agencies are working together to reduce bushfire risk andachieve the best possible outcome for local communities.

“Early forecasts indicate Victoria will face another significant fireseason with potentially an earlier start due to dry conditions, so it isabsolutely crucial that our fire agencies are well prepared and wellresourced,” Mr Wells said, and added that the joint sessions will ensure emergency services personnel from allfire agencies are briefed with up-to-date information on what to expectthis fire season.

“We know that January and February are generally the busiest periods, but given the dry conditions, we could see more fire activity in parts of thestate in December as well,” he said.

Mr Wells said the briefings will include representatives from Emergency Management Victoria, CFA, Department of Environment and PrimaryIndustries, MFB, VICSES, Victoria Police, Department of Health, Department of Human Services and local councils.
“Representatives will be given briefings on the seasonal outlook, Victoria’s new emergency management arrangements and policy and proceduralchanges,” Mr Wells said. He added that the briefings provide an opportunity to understand the environment thatagencies will be working in locally and statewide, incident decision making process, the resourcing required and the preparedness of individual communities.
Mr Wells said Victoria’s fire agencies and supporting partners arecommitted to working together and with the community to ensure a saferVictoria this fire season.
“The Napthine Government is building a safer Victoria by ensuringVictoria’s emergency management system provides the best possible responseto emergencies,” Mr Wells said.

“The Coalition Government’s significant investments in Victoria’s fireservices and the broad suite of emergency management reforms that havebeen introduced over the past four years are helping to ensure Victoria is
now better protected,” he added.

Last year CFA, DEPI and MFB firefighters fought more than 4,600 bush andgrass fires in what was the busiest year since 2009.

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