Park to ignite in fuel-reduction burns
Summer fire protection for Halls Gap, Pomonal, Dunkeld and districts is providing the incentive for planned burning operations in the Grampians.
Forest Fire Management Victoria is capitalising on mild conditions across the Wimmera for its park-burning program, which was scheduled to start yesterday.
Wimmera district manager Glenn Rudolph said planned burns included a 700-hectare stretch of parkland along Boronia Track at the back of Lake Bellfield, three kilometres south of Halls Gap and three kilometres south-west of Pomonal.
“A public information point will be at Halls Gap Visitor Information Centre to provide more details for the community and visitors to this popular tourist area,” he said.
“Forest Fire Management Victoria and Country Fire Authority are also planning to target an area of private bush on the western side of Pomonal, which is the continuation of a burn we started last year.”
Mr Rudolph said planned burning was also scheduled near Cassidy’s Gap Road and within the Serra Range between Grampians Road to the east and a Serra Range fireline across a ridge to the west.
“Our Forest Fire Management Victoria and supporting Country Fire Authority crews are closely monitoring these sites to determine if conditions will be suitable for the ignition of the planned burns,” he said.
Weather and fuel moisture conditions permitting, ignition was scheduled for yesterday and today, with monitoring of burn sites continuing into the latter parts of the week.
“Residents of Halls Gap, Pomonal, Dunkeld and surrounding communities, including travellers along Grampians and Victoria Valley Roads, might see and smell smoke from these planned burns,” Mr Rudolph said.
“Road and track users must obey all traffic signs and instructions from fire-agency crews near the burns, noting that some trails and tracks might be closed.
“Within the Boronia Track burn area, Boronia Peak, Fyans Creek loop from Brambuk to Tandara Road and Delleys Bridge, and rock-climbing activities south of Tunnel Track will all be closed, as will the tunnel walking track, Mt Cassell and Bellfield firelines, and any off-track walking and rock climbing access in the Bellfield Fireline area.
“The Mt Abrupt Walking Track and climbing areas within the Cassidy’s Gap burn site will also be closed.”
Mr Rudolph said the focus was on reducing bushfire fuel for the protection of people, property and environmental and heritage assets, particularly for next summer.
People can find out when planned burns are happening online at www. ffm.vic.gov.au/plannedburn. They can also download a Vic Emergency app or call a hotline on 1800 226 226.