The official Bush Fire Danger Period is in force from September 1.
The NSW Rural Fire Service brought the statutory period forward by one month in the Hunter Valley District including Muswellbrook and Singleton due to the extremely dry conditions.
Fire permits are suspended as well and Operational Officer Leanne Bell said in a bid to keep the communities safe.
“During this time fire permits are required for all fires in the open. Due to the prolonged dry period and drought conditions, all fire permits will be suspended from the start of the bush fire danger period for the Muswellbrook and Singleton areas,"
“Serious penalties, including fines and/or imprisonment, apply for starting a fire without a permit during the Bush Fire Danger Period.”
In a bid to boost the tools firefighters have available to them across the bushfire period, Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant today unveiled the 'Boomer' Large Air Tanker (LAT) for the season.
Troy Grant said the LAT will be able to carry and dump more than 11,300 litres of water or fire retardant at a time and will be used for direct attacks on both bush and grass fires, creating containment lines, and providing urban interface protection.
Mr Grant said this is the first time the RJ-85 aircraft has been based in NSW, and it will be the first of a record four LATs being used for the bush fire season, which has officially been brought forward with one third of the state entering the ‘Bush Fire Danger Period’ this weekend.
“With $38 million allocated over four years for these massive aircraft, our Government continues to lead the way with the biggest investment in the country to support these resources,” Mr Grant said.
“This impressive aircraft will support the efforts of our firefighters on the ground to ultimately ensure that lives and property are kept as safe as possible this season,” Mr Grant said.
For more information on the Bush Fire Danger Period contact Hunter Valley Fire Control on 6575 1200 during business hours or visit www.rfs.nsw.gov.au
Image credit: Troy Grant Twitter