By Michael Roberts | posted on December 10, 2020
THE Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) is urging Great Southern residents to download a new app that helps people to develop a personalised bushfire plan for when the worst happens.
Launched late last month, the My Bushfire Plan app helps users make critical decisions such as when to leave, what to take and where to go before a fire approaches their home.
DFES Great Southern Superintendent Wayne Green said it wasn’t just important for regional homeowners to develop a plan, but also tourists who were considering travelling down for the summer holidays.
“The app literally only takes you five minutes,” he said.
“It is very intuitive and guides people through every step they need to take to build a fire-proof plan.
“It’s your plan in your pocket. It’s accessible offline, you don’t need phone coverage.”
Although the Great Southern has experienced a wet start to the warmer months, Mr Green said the risk of bushfires was still high.
“With that rain we get very good growing conditions, so we get higher fuel loads that unfortunately can’t be mitigated because it’s now summer,” he said.
“So, we have to carry that additional load as a risk through the summer period.”
A seasonal outlook released by the Bushfire and Natural Hazard Cooperative Research Centre revealed planned burning and past bushfires had reduced fuel loads across some forested areas of the South West, but there were “still areas of forest and shrubland vegetation carrying significant surface fuel loads”.
The My Bushfire Plan app is available from the App Store or Google Play for a smart phone or tablet device.
You can also visit mybushfireplan.wa.gov.au for more information.