Bushfires are a part of every Australian summer, even in the cooler part of WA. Bushfires can start without warning, move quickly and spread over large areas. The effects can be devastating and have a lasting impact on communities and the environment.
Managing the risk of bushfire is a shared responsibility: local government, state government agencies and the community all need to do their part. This page contains important information on what you need to do to ensure your property is as well prepared as possible for the threat of bushfire. These mitigation measures are required by law and penalties of up to $5,000 may be issued if you don't take the necessary steps to prepare your property.
If you are unable to meet these requirements you may be eligible to apply for a variation. Please see the Variation to Fire Management Requirements section below.
Land owners and occupiers have a legal responsibility to prepare their property for the fire season. The fire mitigation requirements are listed in the City of Albany's Fire Management Notice which is distributed to households annually, and available to download on the link below.
The Notice is a legal document, issued under Section 33 of the Bush Fire Act 1954, which details the required mitigation measures that must be put in place, and maintained for the entire fire season.
The fire mitigation measures must remain in place for the following periods (unless otherwise advertised:
- 1 November to 30 April in the north east sector of the City (east of Manypeaks)
- 1 December to 14 May in the south west sector of the City (west of Manypeaks).
Click on the link below to download the Fire Management Notice 2018/19.
- Fire Management Notice 2018/19 (1MB)Land owners and occupiers are required to prepare their properties for the fire season. This includes installing and maintaining fire breaks and reducing fuel loads. This Notice sets out the actions that must be taken. Issued under section 33 of the Bush Fires Act 1964.
If you are unable to meet the fire management measures listed in this Notice, you must apply for approval to take alternative measures to prevent the outbreak or spread of a bush fire.
Supporting evidence of your capacity to prevent the start and spread of bushfire, which are at least as effective as the measures required in the Notice needs to be provided with your application.
Where a variation has been granted, any conditions that apply to the variation must be complied with. Any requirements stipulated in this Notice for which a variation has not been granted must still be complied with.
Completed applications must be received by the City by no late than 1 October 2018.
You will be notified of the outcome of your application in writing.
For more information click on the Variation Guidelines heading below.
- Variation to Fire Management Requirements Application Form 2018/19 (341KB)This form is required to apply for a variation for the requirements listed in the City's annual Fire Management Notice.
A Variation to Requirements may be approved if you are unable to meet the requirements of the Fire Management Notice. You will need to complete an application form and provide details of alternative fire prevention measures that meet the intention of the Notice. For example, firebreaks may be allowed in alternative locations to divert around natural obstructions and to allow for access.
Reasons for Variations
The following are acceptable categories for which a variation to the fire management notice may be considered:
Property is steep and inaccessible and the installation of firebreaks or other fire mitigation measures would be dangerous or impractical.
Areas of rocky outcrops or cap stone naturally reduces the fire risk.
Parts of the property is permanently water logged. (If only seasonally water logged, the Fire Management Requirements must be met as soon as the area has dried out sufficiently.)
- Where clearing is likely to impact upon areas of declared rare flora or environmentally sensitive areas as defined under the Environmental Protection (Clearing of Native Vegetation) Regulations 2004.
- An approved fire management plan is in place for the property and the conditions contained in the plan are being adhered to.
- Building positioning on block prevents the installation of an Asset Protection Zone of the required size.
- For properties over 100ha that are bona fide agricultural operations:
- the grazing of stock that results in grassland being maintained at a height of 50mm or less;
- seasonal cropping that results in low fuel load being maintained. (Please note that the fire management requirements relating to Agricultural and Machinery Operations must be complied with.); and/or
- heavy machinery available on the property to prevent the spread of fire (e.g. bulldozer, grader, plough, scarifier or front end loader).
How to apply:
- All requests are to be submitted in writing on the approved form and include a detailed, legible map showing alternative fire mitigation measures.
- The application form is available on the City of Albany website (search for Variation to Fire Management Requirements form).
- Completed application forms must be received by the City of Albany on or before 1 October 2018.
- All submission must be made by the land owner or by a person authorised to act on their behalf.
- The authorising officer has the right to grant, refuse, alter or add any conditions to an application.
- Where a fire management plan is provided as part of the application, it must be completed by an accredited Bushfire Planning and Design (BPAD) practitioner. Visit the Fire Protection Association (FPA) Australia at http://www.fpaa.com.au/bpad/practitioners.aspx to contact a BPAD practitioner.
- Where a Variation has been approved for a portion of a property, the requirements of the Notice must be conformed to for the rest of the property.
- Variations may be approved as "in perpetuity" until the ownership of the property changes, or may be subject to an expiry date. Where the Variation includes an expiry date, it is the applicant’s responsibility to note this date and submit a new application prior to the expiry date.
- Incomplete applications will not be processed.
- The City will notify the applicant in writing of the outcome of the application.
- Where an application has been declined, the applicant is to comply with requirements of the Notice by the due date contained in the Notice.
Properties situated in Special Residential, Rural Residential (Special Rural) or Conservation zones may have specific fire mitigation measures applicable that are listed in the Albany Local Planning Scheme 1, the subdivision guide plan (structure plan) or an approved bush fire management plan.
These additional fire mitigation measures may include (but are not limited to):
• Compliant access to dwellings.
• Permanent water supply.
• Maintenance of Strategic Fire Access Routes (see page 11 for more details).
All bush fire mitigation measures applicable to your property detailed in the Planning Scheme or approved plans are to be complied with.
All properties must meet Asset Protection Zone (APZ) (building protection zone and hazard separation zones) requirements.
If you're unsure about the zoning of your property, visit the City's online map module . For more information regarding the additional fire management measures, contact the City of Albany Planning Department.
(Excluding Conservation, Special Residential and Rural Residential zoned Properties.)
The following fire mitigation measures apply to vacant and developed land measuring up to and including 4,000m2 in area:
- Clear and maintain the land free of all flammable matter, including piles of timber (excluding firewood during late autumn and winter), branches and other dried vegetation matter.
- Install hazard specific fire breaks (see page 10).
- Shrubs should not be located under trees or within 3 metres of buildings. They are to be maintained and pruned to remove dead material.
- Trees are to be pruned and maintained to the following standard:
Branches must be removed or pruned to ensure a separation of at least 3 metres from the eaves of all buildings and 5 metres above the top of the roof.
- Branches that may fall on the house must be removed.
- Clearance of 2.5 metres between trees and power lines to avoid contact that may start a fire or bring down a power line.
- The spacing of individual or groups of trees should be 15 metres apart to provide for a 5 metres separation between tree crowns. Canopy cover should aim to be no more than 15%.
(Excluding Conservation, Special Residential and Rural Residential zoned Properties)
(See also Agricultural and Machinery Operations requirements page 7.)
- Perimeter fire breaks (see page 10)
- Hazard specific fire breaks (see page 10)
- Maintaining fuel load to an average of 8 tonnes per hectare or less (see page 11).
- Asset Protection Zone (for dwellings, outbuildings and other agricultural infrastructure.
See definition and standards on page 8).
(Excluding Conservation, Special Residential and Rural Residential zoned Properties)
(See also Agricultural and Machinery Operations requirements)
The following measures are required:
- Perimeter fire breaks.
- A bare-earth, 3 metre wide fire break with 5 metre vertical clearance is to be constructed within 100 metres of all buildings, haystacks, stockpiled flammable matter and fuel dumps. It must be constructed to provide unrestricted vehicular access.
- Install Hazard Specific Fire Breaks
The City of Albany recognises that some agricultural operations, by the nature of the agricultural activities carried out such as grazing or cropping, reduce the risk of the outbreak or spread of bush fire. On those properties, the reduced fire risk may mean that perimeter fire breaks are not required. However, you will need to apply for a Variation to Requirements.
- Perimeter fire breaks or an approved variation to requirements supported by a fire management plan that provides evidence of your capacity to prevent and control the outbreak and spread of bushfire.
- A bare-earth, 3 metre wide fire break with 5 metre vertical clearance is to be constructed within 100 metres of all buildings, haystacks, stockpiled flammable matter and fuel dumps. It must be constructed to provide unrestricted vehicular access.
- Hazard Specific Fire Breaks.
The following requirements apply to agricultural operations:
- Cropping paddocks must be broken into compartments not exceeding 250ha in area each
separated by internal fire breaks.
- During harvest operations a fully operational selfpropelled (i.e. not trailer mounted) fire fighting unit with a minimum water capacity of 600 litres is to be located in the paddock being harvested.
- Where two or more harvesting machines are operating, the minimum water capacity is to be
- During restricted and prohibited burning times, all harvesting machinery must carry a fire extinguisher. The minimum standard is a 9 litre water extinguisher.
- During restricted and prohibited burning times, all tractors and trucks involved in harvesting operations are to carry a hand-held fire extinguisher.
Owners and lessee of plantations and regeneration blocks must comply with the conditions detailed in the DFES’s Plantation Fire Protection Guidelines unless approval to vary those conditions has been granted by the City of Albany. Copies of the guidelines are available from the DFES website.
The following measures are also required (unless a Variation to Requirements has been granted):
- provide a key to access gates to their local Bush Fire Brigade;
- provide a red PVC container at entry points with maps showing water points, tracks and contact details;
- have perimeter fire breaks 10m wide 4 metre vertical clearance;
- be broken into compartments not exceeding 250ha in area separated by internal fire breaks 6 metres wide and with a 4 metre vertical clearance; and
- install a 15 metre mineral earth break under any power lines.
An asset protection zone (APZ) is an area surrounding a building that is managed to reduce the bushfire hazard to an acceptable level, and generally consist of managed vegetation, reticulated lawns and gardens and other non-flammable features.
Houses constructed after 2015 should maintain an APZ as per the Bush Fire Attack Level (BAL) report prepared as part of Planning and Building approvals.
Houses constructed before 2015 should have an APZ of 20m (or to the boundary of the property where a 20m distance cannot be achieved). It is important to note that the 20m clearing may not be enough to provide adequate protection and an additional distance should be cleared where possible to ideally meet the BAL29 standard, please consult a bushfire consultant to assist you with calculation.
On sloping ground the APZ distance shall increase at least 1 metre for every degree in slope on the sides of the habitable building that are exposed to down slope natural vegetation.
If there are special bush fire management measures that apply to your property under the Albany Local Planning Scheme 1, the subdivision guide plan (structure plan) or an approved Bushfire Management Plan, the APZ and hazard separation zones defined in those documents are to be complied with.
If you are unsure if your property is subject to any special bush fire management requirements, please contact the City of Albany Planning team.
The following information provides additional information regarding ways to meet the requirements of this Notice.
Trees (> 5 metres in height): trunks at maturity should be a minimum distance of 6 metres from all buildings, branches should not touch or overhang the building, lower branches should be removed to a height of 2 metres above the ground or surface vegetation, canopy cover should be less than 15% at maturity be at least 5 metres apart so as to not form a continuous canopy.
Shrubs (0.5 metres to 5 metres in height): should not be located under trees or within 3 metres of buildings, should not be planted in clumps greater than 5m2 in area, clumps of shrubs should be separated from each other and any exposed window or door by at least 10 metres. Shrubs greater than 5 metres in height are to be treated as trees.
Ground covers (<0.5 metres in height): can be planted under trees but must be maintained to remove dead plant material and any parts within 2 metres of a structure, but 3 metres from windows or doors if greater than 100 millimetres in height.
Grass: should be managed to maintain a height of 100 millimetres or less.
Fences: within the APZ are constructed from non-combustible materials (e.g. iron, brick, limestone, metal post and wire). It is recommended that non-combustible perimeter fences are used.
Objects within 10 metres of a building: combustible objects must not be located close to windows and doors.
Fine fuel load: combustible dead vegetation matter less than 6 millimetres in thickness should be reduced to and maintained at an average of two tonnes per hectare.
Bush Fire Prone Areas
Houses located in bush fire prone areas constructed after April 2016, or any extensions built from that time, must comply with the Department of Planning’s State Planning Policy 3.7. These dwellings shall comply with the definition of APZ as per section A2.1 of the Department of Planning’s Guidelines for Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas.
For more information visit the Department of Planning website.
A map of bush fire prone areas is available on the DFES website.
For more information visit the Department of Fire & Emergency Services Building Protection Zone webpage.
Fuel loads refers to the amount of flammable material available for a fire to burn and is measured by the amount of available fuel per unit area. Reducing fuel around your property may help protect your home from bush fire.
The intensity (heat) and rate of spread of bushfire is influenced by the amount of fuel (vegetation) available to burn. If the amount of fuel around your property is reduced, a bushfire will burn more slowly and generate less intense heat. This will reduce the impact of the bushfire on life and property and assist fire managers in suppressing the bushfire.
Fuel loads are to be maintained at or below 8 tonnes per hectare. This is equal to 8 handfuls of flammable material per square metre.
Low fuel loads can be achieved by the following measures;
slashing vegetation on the whole block to a height not exceeding 50mm; or
conducting parkland clearing, which is the removal of vegetation to a maximum height of 50mm but leaving trees in place; or
hazard reduction burning.
Perimeter Fire Breaks
Perimeter fire breaks are required on properties larger than 4,000m2.
Fire breaks must be 3 metres wide with 4 metres vertical clearance.
The land must be ploughed, cultivated, scarified, chemically sprayed, slashed or otherwise cleared to a maximum vegetation height of 50mm.
Any overhanging branches, trees, shrubs must be cleared to a vertical height of 4m over the designated fire break.
A perimeter fire break should be constructed as close as possible to the property boundary and must be placed within 20 metres of the property boundary.
Fire breaks longer than 400m should include a fire appliance turning area of at least 10 metre diameter at appropriate locations to allow fire vehicles to safely exit a property.
Hazard Specific Fire Breaks
If you have any of the following on your property, regardless of the property size, fire breaks must be constructed around them as follows:
- Green power domes –3 metre fire break
- Wood heaps and hay stacks – 3 metre fire break
- Fuel storage areas – 3 metre fire break
- Garden refuse piles – 3 metre fire break
- Power poles - 2.5 metre fire break
Fire Break Standards are Your Responsibility
If a contractor has been engaged to install fire breaks on a property, the landowner/occupier is responsible for ensuring that the fire break meets the required standards.
A Strategic Fire Access Route (SFAR), previously referred to as Strategic Fire Break, is both a major fire access road and a major fire break designed to allow a heavy duty fire appliance to access properties.
Where a SAFR is located on your property, you will be required to install and maintain it, to the satisfaction of the City.
SFAR do not replace the requirement for individual perimeter fire breaks unless this is specified in an approved Bushfire Management Plan.
It must not be obstructed by buildings, fences, tree planting and so on. Unlocked gates are to be provided on property boundaries where the SFAR crosses.
Strategic Fire Access Routes must meet the following conditions:
- be a minimum of 6m wide
- be maintained clear of all fire fuel
- have an all-weather trafficable surface of at least 4m
- have a vertical clearance of at least 4.5m
- include a turning area (minimum radius of 10m) approximately every 500m
- have places installed every 100m, which should be 20m long and 6m wide.
Details of the locations of SFARs are included in Bushfire Management Plans and sub-division guide plans or can be obtained from the City of Albany Planning Department.
Where an approved Bushfire Management Plan is in place, all properties covered by the Plan are to comply with the conditions of that Plan.
This includes maintenance of all strategic fire access tracks, emergency access ways and fire service access routes that may be present on your property. If you are unsure if your property is covered by a Bushfire Management Plan, please contact the City of Albany Planning Department.
Please note that a Bush Fire Management plan approved by the City can be used to set the standard for or vary the fire management notice for an individual property or for a number of properties.
If you are unsure if your property is covered by a Bushfire Management Plan, please contact the City of Albany.
Prohibited Burning Times
Under the Bush Fires Act 1954, it is generally an offence to light fires during the Prohibited Burning Time. Penalties of up to $10,000 fine or 12 months’ imprisonment or both may apply.
Restricted Burning Times
Permits are required to light a fire during the Restricted Burning Time. All permit holders are required to comply with the requirements of the Bush Fire Act 1954. Any additional special
2018/19 Burning Periods
North East Sector:
- 1 October 2018 to 14 November 2018: Restricted Burning - Permits Required
- 15 November 2018 to 28 February 2019 - BURNING PROHIBITED
- 1 March 2019 to 30 April 2019: Restricted Burning - Permits Required
South West Sector:
- 1 November 2018 to 14 December 2018: Restricted Burning - Permits Required
- 15 December 2018 to 15 March 2019: BURNING PROHIBITED
- 16 March 2019 to 14 May 2019: Restricted Burning - Permits Required
Seasonal conditions may result in variation to these dates. Any changes will be advertised in local newspapers and updated on this website.
Permits to burn are issued subject to certain conditions which are listed on the permit. Failure to comply with all of these conditions may result in a fine of $250. All permit holders must comply with the requirements of the Bush Fire Act 1954.
Permits will not be issued to burn materials that can be disposed off in a green-waste bin. No permits will be issued Good Friday to Easter Monday (inclusive).
Please consider your neighbours when undertaking a burn and make sure that smoke doesn't drift onto roads causing a traffic hazard.
If you live within the DFES Fire and Rescue Services (FRS) district which covers the Albany town site and close adjacent areas, you can apply for a permit in person at our Administration Office at 102 North Road for an Application for Permit to Burn form or click on the link below to download a form.
If you live outside of this please contact your local Volunteer Bush Fire Control Officer for an application for a permit to burn. If you are unsure of which brigade area you live in, visit the City's online map module to check your address.
- Application for an Inspection Prior to the Intention to Burn (36KB)Application for a Fire Control Officer to inspect a property prior to issuing a Permit to Burn during the restricted burning times. (For use within the FRS fire district only)
Total Fire Ban
A Total Fire Ban (TFB) may be declared by the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) on days when fires are most likely to threaten lives and property. This is because of predicted adverse fire weather or when widespread fires are impacting the availability of resources.
During a TFB, the lighting of any fire in the open air is prohibited. This includes all open cooking and camping fires and incinerators. It also includes ‘hot work’ such as welding, grinding and soldering or gas cutting. The penalty is a fine of $25,000 or imprisonment for 12 months, or both.
TFBs are announced on the DFES website, on ABC Radio and the DFES Twitter feed. Exemptions may be available. You can find out more about TFBs by visiting the DFES website.
Harvest and Vehicle Movement Bans
The City of Albany may impose Harvest and/or Vehicle Movement Bans when adverse fire weather conditions are experienced. The City will consult with Volunteer Bush Fire Brigades' weather officers to determine if a ban is warranted.
During harvest bans all harvesting operations must immediately cease. No harvesting is permitted on Christmas Day.
A vehicle movement ban means no internal combustion powered vehicles are to be driven in paddocks or bush areas and ‘hot work’ such as welding or grinding is not to be undertaken in the open air.
Communication of Fire Bans
The City of Albany will endeavour to communicate broadly when a ban is imposed. However, it is the responsibility of landowners and occupiers to check if bans are in place before engaging in any activity that may be prohibited for the duration of the ban.
All bans will be communicated via ABC local radio on 558AM or 630AM 10:05am, 12:35pm and 2:05pm.
If you are a farmer or a contractor and would like to receive notification by SMS notification of Harvest or Vehicle Movement Bans direct to your mobile phone email email@example.com with your name, organisation name and mobile number.
What is the City of Albany's Fire Management Notice?
The Fire Management Notice is a legal document that instructs land owners and occupiers of the actions they must take to prepare their properties for the fire season. It is sometimes referred to as the "fire break notice", however this term is misleading as fire breaks is only one of the required fire mitigation measures.
The authority for local governments to issue these instructions is provided under section 33 of the Bush Fires Act 1954. Landowners or occupiers who fail to comply with the conditions contained in the Fire Management Notice may be issued with a penalty of up to $5,000 under the Act.
Is this new?
The City of Albany issues a Fire Management Notice every year prior to the fire season. However, some of the requirements have changed, so please take the time to read this year’s Notice carefully.
I didn’t know what the Notice was so I threw it in the bin. What do I do?
The City of Albany conducts a public awareness campaign to advise land owners and occupiers of their responsibilities for preparing their properties for the fire season. Not reading the Notice does not provide an excuse for not complying with the legal requirements contained in the Notice.
I didn’t receive the Fire Management Notice - what do I do?
The City posts a hard copy of the notice to all landowners with their Rates Notice. If you didn’t receive the Notice in the mail, you are still bound by the requirements of the Notice. The Notice is also available as a download on our website www.albany.wa.gov.au or contact the City of Albany Rangers on 6820 3999 to request a replacement copy.
I live in town - do I need to comply with the Notice?
Yes. All residents who own or occupy land within the City of Albany area are required to ensure that they comply with the Notice; this includes the suburban areas.
What is the “Fire Season”?
The fire season refers to the period when bush fires are likely to start and spread rapidly. The City of Albany covers over 4,000km2, so people living in the north east section of the City experience different climatic conditions to those living in the south west corner. Therefore different fire season dates apply depending on where you live:
• North east sector – 1 November to 30 April (unless otherwise advised)
• South west sector – 1 December to 30 April (unless otherwise advised)
In addition, seasonal changes may impact on the fire season dates. For example, a late hot spell may cause the fire season dates to be extended. Any changes to the dates will be advertised in the local newspapers and on the City of Albany website.
I cannot meet the requirements by the due date deadline, can I get an extension?
Reducing the risk of bush fire is a shared responsibility between local government, state government agencies and the community: we all have our part to play. Land owners and occupiers are responsible for making sure their properties are compliant with the requirements of the Fire Management Notice by the due date to reduce the level of bush fire risk for the whole community and, therefore, extensions will generally not be granted.
What do I do if I can’t meet some or all of the Fire Management Requirements?
If you are unable to comply with some or all of the conditions contained in the Notice, you must apply for a Variation to the Fire Management Notice.
How do I apply for a Variation to the Fire Management Notice?
Applications for a Variation can be obtained by:
• Downloading a form from the City’s website at www.albany.wa.gov.au
• In person from the City of Albany offices at 102 North Road, Yakamia.
• Email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a form.
The completed form must be returned to the City of Albany by 1 October 2018.
How do I know if I’m eligible for a Variation?
Applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis and you will be advised of the outcome in writing.
How long does a Variation last?
The City of Albany is currently reviewing its Variation to Requirements process. This website will be updated as soon as the review is complete.
Why do I have to keep applying for a Variation when my property never changes?
The fire management requirements contained in the Fire Management Notice are reviewed annually and may change from year to year. This means that land owners and occupiers need to read the Notice each year and determine if there are any of the requirements for which they need to seek a variation.
What is the cut-off date for Variations?
All forms must be received by the City of Albany by 1 October 2018. Late or incomplete applications may not be considered.
How will I know if my application for a Variation has been approved?
The City of Albany will advise you in writing of the outcome of your application. Please note that all of the requirements stipulated in this Notice for which a variation has not been granted must be complied with.
What happens if my application for a Variation is declined?
You will be notified in writing and you will be required to comply with the conditions contained in the Fire Management Notice before the due date.
Who can help me complete my Variation application?
There is information on the City of Albany website to assist you in completing your application. In addition your local Volunteer Fire Brigade Fire Control Officer may be able to assist or contact the City of Albany.
Do I need to maintain my firebreaks and low fuel zones throughout the whole fire season?
Yes. It is the owner's or occupier’s responsibility to maintain their fire breaks and low fuel zones, including asset protection zones, until 30 April the following year (unless otherwise notified). This may mean slashing or spraying any re-growth.
Do I have to clear all vegetation around my house to put in an asset protection zone?
No, an asset protection zone (APZ) is a 20 metre low-fuel zone around your home. Click here for information on APZ standards.
I can’t put in a 20 metre asset protection zone as my block isn’t big enough. What do I do?
The asset protection zone (APZ) should be confined within the property boundary. For existing buildings that are located less than 20 metres from a property boundary, the AZP does not have to extend over that boundary.
How will reducing the fuel loads on my property make a difference if a bush fire comes through?
Reducing the fuel loads around your home means that embers from a bush fire will have less chance to catch fire when they hit the ground. This will also help reduce the damage caused by the fire and slow the rate of spread of the fire. The better you prepare your property the higher the chance it will survive a bushfire, even if you are not there.
Why does a fire break have to be 3 metres wide with 4 metres vertical clearance?
This is the minimum width and height clearance require to allow a City of Albany fire appliance to access your property.
Do my fire breaks have to cover my whole property?
Perimeter fire breaks are required on properties larger than 4,000m2, and are to be located as close as possible to the boundary. Where obstructions occur, the fire break can deviate around the obstruction, but should be within 20 meters of the property boundary.
What if my property is water-logged at the start of the fire season can I apply for a Variation for that period only?
While a portion of the property is water-logged, it will not burn and therefore does not constitute a fire risk. However, as the property dries out, then fire breaks are required to be installed as per the provisions of the Notice. Please note that compliance inspections are carried out at random and may occur at any time during the fire season.
My next door neighbour hasn’t installed their fire breaks. What can I do to report it and have them comply as well?
You can contact the City of Albany to lodge a complaint. They may then investigate the issue and take appropriate action.
I have animals grazing my paddocks. Do I still need to install a fire break?
If you are a bona fide primary producer and have animals grazing your paddocks as part of farming operations throughout the fire season and the grass is grazed to a height of 50mm or less, you can apply for a Variation to Fire Management Requirements.
I have recently purchased a property and I was not aware of the fire management requirements. What do I do?
If you have recently purchased a property and you are unable to comply with the requirements contained in the Notice by the due date, please contact the City of Albany Rangers on 6820 3999.
Can you recommend a fire break contractor?
The City is unable to recommend a particular contractor. However, check the ACCI directory under Firebreaks or Earthmoving for local contractors.
I have engaged a contractor to maintain my fire breaks for me, what do I need to do?
As the property owner or occupier you are responsible to ensure that the works completed by your contractor comply with the standards stipulated in the Notice.
What is a Bush Fire Management Plan?
Within the context of the Notice, a Bush Fire Management Plan is a document submitted by developers at the time of creating a new sub-division which provides details of the bush fire mitigation measures that are to be put in place for that sub-division. This may include strategic fire breaks, emergency access ways or fire service routes. The plan may also include areas that are to be maintained as low-threat vegetation.
It is important that land owners or occupiers are aware of the provisions of these plans and that any measures that have been put into place are maintained.
There is a strategic fire break in place for my sub-division. Do I still need to install perimeter fire breaks on my property?
Some sub-divisions may have strategic fire breaks in place as part of the Fire Management Plan for that area. Only properties that directly abut the strategic fire break are deemed to be covered by that fire break. All other requirements listed in the Notice must be complied with, which may include the need for the installation of a perimeter fire break.
Will anyone check my property?
The City of Albany Rangers will conduct random inspections of properties throughout the municipality to check for compliance with the fire management requirements. Please note that Ranges will be checking on compliance with ALL the fire mitigation requirements, not just perimeter fire breaks.
Can the Rangers enter my property without my permission?
Yes, under the Bush Fires Act 1954, as authorised Fire Control Officers, Rangers are permitted to enter your property to undertake inspections to ensure compliance with the City’s Fire Management Notice.
What happens if my property is not compliant?
The City of Albany considers non-compliance with the Fire Management Notice to be a serious offence as it compromises the safety of the whole community. If you fail to meet the requirements stipulated in the Notice, you may receive a $250 fine. You will then have seven days in which to ensure your property is compliant.
The property will be re-inspected after this period. If still non-compliant the City will engage a contractor to carry out the work and you will be billed for this work along with any associated administrative costs.
I received a fine at the end of the fire season. I cleared my block at the start of the fire season so why didn’t you check it then?
All landowners and occupiers have a responsibility to maintain their land in accordance with the fire management requirements throughout the fire season. Rangers will carry out inspections at any time during the fire season, and non-compliant properties may be subject to penalties, regardless of whether or not the block was previously compliant.
Why do the Rangers seem to be only inspecting my area and not others?
Rangers will carry out random inspections on properties throughout the municipality. Areas that are deemed to be of higher risk from bush fires may be assigned priority by the City. If you have any concerns regarding a property that may constitute a high bush fire risk, please contact the Rangers.
There is a City reserve that doesn’t have fire breaks, why do I need to have breaks if the City doesn’t comply?
Fire mitigation activities within the City of Albany reserves are directed by a comprehensive fire management plan that takes into account the risk of fire posed by each reserve to the community as well as environmental considerations. The City’s Reserves Team has an extensive hazard reduction programme in place for its reserves which include prescribed burns as well as mechanical mitigation measures.
The following measures may help keep your home safe in the event of a bush fire:
- Keep your gutters free of leaves and other combustible material.
- Build your paths adjacent to the building and have your driveway placed so that it maximises the protection to the house.
- If possible, plan your garden so that your vegetable garden, lawn, pool or patio is on the side of the house likely to face a fire (where the bush is).
- Store firewood away from the building.
- Ensure that your gas bottles are secured and positioned so that it will vent away from the building if it is subject to flame contact or radiant heat.
- Ensure fences are non-combustible so they can help to shield your home from a bushfire and radiant heat.
For more information on protecting your home and family in the event of a bushfire, visit the Department of Fire & Emergency Services website on the link below.
Having a plan in place for what to do in case of a bushfire emergency is critical if you live in or near bushlands. Having a written bushfire survival plan in place, keeping it up to date and practicing it regularly can help save you and your family’s lives, your property and your livelihood.
Visit the Department of Fire & Emergency Services website for information on what you should include in your plan and sample plans.
The City of Albany carries out a program of prescribed burns on its reserves during the autumn and winter months. Burns are carried out subject to weather and volunteer availability.
- Prescribed Burn - Sandalwood Road, Wellstead (2MB)NF1328859 - Prescribed Burn, Sandalwood Road, Wellstead
- Prescribed Burn - Camp Kennedy (2MB)NF1333156 - Prescribed Burn, Camp Kennedy
- Prescribed burn map Mercer Road cell 1 (2MB)Mercer Road cell 1, Prescribed burn map
- Prescribed Burn - Bornholm (2MB)NF1440890 - Prescribed Burn, Bornholm
- Prescribed Burn - Swaine Rise (2MB)NF1543634 - Prescribed Burn, Swaine Rise
- Prescribed Burn - West Wignalls, Cell 1 (2MB)NF1549158 - Prescribed Burn, West Wignalls, Cell 1
- prescribed burn - Railway Rd (3MB)Railway Rd prescribed burn map
- Prescribed Burn - Sandpatch, Cell 32 (2MB)NF1651505 - Prescribed Burn, Sandpatch Cell 32
- Prescribed Burn - Napier NR013 cell 3 (2MB)Prescribed Burn - Napier NR013 cell 3
- Chillinup Gnowellen Prescribed Burn (3MB)Map showing Chillinup Gnowellen Prescribed Burn
- Wellstead cell 18 Prescribed Burn (3MB)Wellstead cell 18 Prescribed Burn
- Mt Clarence Cell 17c Prescribed Burn (3MB)Mt Clarence Cell 17c Prescribed Burn
- Bon Accord cell 7 Prescribed Burn (3MB)Bon Accord cell 7 Prescribed Burn
- Sandpatch cell 17 Prescribed Burn (4MB)Sandpatch cell 17 Prescribed Burn
- Redmond cell 5 Prescribed Burn (2MB)Redmond cell 5 Prescribed Burn
- Manypeaks cell 4 Prescribed Burn (3MB)Manypeaks cell 4 Prescribed Burn
- Prescribed Burn Gnowellen Rd (6MB)Prescribed Burn Gnowellen Rd
- Prescribed Burn Torbay Cell 11 (5MB)Prescribed Burn Torbay Cell 11
- Prescribed Burn Poicerlerup (8MB)Prescribed Burn Poicelerup
- Prescribed Burn Upper King River (6MB)Prescribed Burn Upper King River
- Prescribed Burn Melville Cell 13 (6MB)Prescribed Burn Melville Cell 13