WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FIRE RATINGS
Fire danger ratings
Fire danger ratings tell you how dangerous a fire would be if one started.
The higher the rating, the more dangerous the conditions.
Make sure you know what fire weather district you are in and check the fire danger rating and total fire ban for that district every day during summer.
If the rating is Code Red or extreme, you could be risking your life if you wait and see what happens.
Ratings are forecast using Bureau of Meteorology data, based on weather and other environmental conditions such as fuel load.
Providing this information in advance allows people to prepare for any significant forecast of fire weather.
● To check the fire danger rating, visit www.emergency.vic.gov.au or check the VicEmergency app or phone the VicEmergency hotline on 1800 226 226. Download the VicEmergency app now so you know how it works well before you need to use it. For example, you can set up tailored watch zones for the area where you live or are heading to on holiday, or to monitor what is happening where friends and family are located.
A fire danger rating of Code Red is the highest level of rating in Victoria.
It clearly identifies to the community, emergency management agencies, municipalities, and other key service providers the potential for the worst possible bushfire conditions.
A Code Red rating is rare and extremely serious. It is determined the day before to allow schools, national parks and other facilities to prepare to close or suspend services.
A Code Red rating means if a fire were to start, it could be uncontrollable, unpredictable and fast moving, so fire services would find it difficult to put out.
There is a high likelihood that people in the path of a fire will be killed or seriously injured. Many homes are likely to be destroyed — even the best prepared homes would not be safe.
If you are in a high-risk area, the only way to stay safe is to leave the night before or the morning of a Code Red day.
Talk to everyone you live with about your plans for a Code Red day, so you all know what to do. Do not rely on getting a warning if a fire starts. It is your responsibility to know when to leave.
● If a fire danger rating of Severe, Extreme or Code Red is predicted, tune in to ABC local radio, commercial and designated community radio stations or Sky News TV, phone the VicEmergency hotline on 1800 226 226, visit www.emergency.vic.gov.au and download the VicEmergency app and follow VicEmergency Twitter and Facebook for more information.