A total fire ban is now in place for the Goondiwindi region.
The State of Fire Emergency bans a range of activities that can cause fires to ignite and prohibits the lighting of specified outdoor fires. The declaration is vital to preventing bushfires from breaking out and posing a danger to lives and property. The declaration also prohibits welding, grinding and the use of oxy-acetylene cutting or heating outdoors near flammable vegetation.
For more information about the State of Fire Emergency declaration residents can visit the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services website at www.qfes.qld.gov.au
"The recent fires in the Southern Downs and Toowoomba Regional Council areas reinforce the need for us as a community to take action and be prepared" is the message from Goondiwindi Regional Council's Local Disaster Management Group Chairman, Councillor Rick Kearney.
"A combination of below average rainfall, dry vegetation, above average temperatures and gusty winds across our Council area have contributed to the early onset of the bushfire season," he said. "Whilst we have been fortunate to not experience any significant impacts to date, the conditions mean that could change in an instant."
A combination of below average rainfall, dry vegetation, above average temperatures and gusty winds across our Council area have contributed to the early onset of the bushfire seasonCr Rick Kearney
"This speed and ferocity that fires have develop at this year has been unprecedented and makes it so important that we are prepared before we have fire on our doorstep."
The Bureau of Meteorology have forecast ongoing dry weather into the summer season so the conditions we have seen in recent weeks will likely continue for the foreseeable future.
Council recommends that residents look at the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service Get Ready Guide. It is a helpful tool for residents to work through to ensure they consider all of the key areas of preparation including emergency kits and home preparation. The guide is available from the QFES website, with additional useful tools available on Councils dedicated disaster management page www.grc.qld.gov.au/council/disasters/management/home
"I just ask that people don't become complacent," Councillor Kearney said.
"Our Local Disaster Management committee are very aware of the bushfire risks that exist particularly in the eastern portions of the region and ask that people report every fire they see, follow all warnings and directions and stay safe."