Fire Management Requirements 

We are working to make some improvements towards our compliance with the coming WHS Act and making it easier for the Fire Control Officers to mobilise registered Farm Responders and Town Brigade members.

🔥 We are asking that all farm responders and permanent workers register as a member in the Farmer Response ‘brigade’ where you live.

🔥 You only need to be registered in 1 area, preferably where you live.

🔥 Registration is free and allows the Shire to provide training and PPC as funding allows.

 

ABC News reported that in a written statement, WA Minister for industrial relations, Stephen Dawson said the new WHS Act placed the responsibility on workers. In this case, volunteers need to ensure they take reasonable steps to keep themselves and others as safe as was reasonably practicable. "If they are doing this, we do not see a circumstance in which they could be prosecuted for their actions," he said.

As your Shire, we want to ensure we are providing local access to training and safe systems of work at emergency incidents, as is required. We believe that being registered, undertaking training, wearing appropriate clothing and keeping your fire unit(s) well maintained, will demonstrate that you are taking ‘reasonable steps’ to keep yourself and others safe.

While we have not yet adopted a Shire of Lake Grace minimum training standard, we are looking to follow the recommendation of DFES as the peak body for fire response in Western Australia. The current recommendation is for Farm Response members to complete the 1-day Rural Fire Awareness course and Town Brigade members to complete the Bushfire Safety Awareness and Fire Fighting Skills courses.  

We acknowledge that it is highly unlikely that we will be able to deliver training before the start of harvest and will work with registered members to deliver the courses as soon as practicable.

For transient and short-term workers, we encourage you to provide appropriate training and induction materials relevant to your farm or business and seriously consider leaving these workers behind if you respond to fires in neighbouring properties for their safety and our shared liability. We will not have the capability or resources to train and equip transient and short-term workers.2

 

An added benefit of registering enables the Chief and other Fire Control Officers to mobilise registered responders easier than in the past, giving them access to a 24/7 call centre who can despatch fire notifications on demand. This system also links in with calling 000 which helps deliver notifications of fire to registered responders as soon as possible.

 

2020/2021 Fire Management Notice (Fire Break Notice)

Protecting out community from bush fires is a shared responsibility, and we all need to work together to reduce the risk of bush fire. The Shire of Lake Grace issues a Fire Management Notice each year that contains the details of how land owners and occupiers must prepare their property for the fire season.

Depending on the size of your property, you may need to install and maintain firebreaks and reduce the amount of flammable material that is on your land.

All habitable buildings should also be surrounded by an Asset Protection Zone that will help your home from damage or destruction if a bush fire happens.

The fire mitigation measures required by the Notice must be in place by 1 November 2020 and maintained until 30 April 2021 (inclusive).

The Fire Management Notice is issued under section 33 of the Bush Fires Act 1954, and is a legal order issued by the Shire.

Plantation Management Requirements

The Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) Guidelines for Plantation Fire Protection have been adopted by the Shire of Lake Grace as the standard required to be met by plantation owners in order to comply with the Shire's Fire Management Requirements.

These guidelines aim to provide a set of best practice fire protection standards for plantations that aim to protect human life and local community interests, while minimising fire risk to plantation assets.

Variation to Requirements

If you are not able to comply with the requirements listed in the Notice, you will need to apply for a Variation to Requirements by 15 October 2020.

Please return your completed form to the Shire:

by email to shire@lakegrace.wa.gov.au

in person to 1 Bishop Street, Lake Grace

by post to PO Box 50, Lake Grace 6353

Penalties may apply

The Fire Management Notice is issued under section 33 of the Bush Fire Act 1954, and non-compliance with the requirement of the Fire Management Notice may incur a $250 fine or a maximum penalty of $5,000. The Shire of Lake Grace, or a contractor engaged by the Shire, may enter your land to install the fire break or reduce fuel loads and you will be charged for expenses incurred.