Australian Bushfire: Here’s How You Can Keep Your Property Safe
Burning embers can travel many kilometers ahead of a fire. So while an actual bushfire may be far away, embers can still cause spot fires to start around your home. Of course, if a fire is threatening your home, the best option is to leave. If you don’t want to leave, there are a few things you can do before you leave.
- Ensure you have no leaves lying on the ground. If you do, rake them up and dispose of them when they’re less likely to catch fire.
- Ensure that stored mulch and firewood are moved far away from your house.
- Patch up any gaps around your home. These gaps include broken roof tiles or holes underneath the verandah. Embers are more likely to enter your home if these gaps exist.
- Create an 8-10 meter firebreak and mow it at least once a year. These firebreaks can be invaluable, especially if it’s just a small fire.
- Clean your gutters of all leaf and sticks. Be sure to put gutter guards in (preferably metal).
- It’s always a great idea to get your generators and water pumps serviced at all times before dry seasons. Roll out your hoses, check the fittings and check that there are no holes in the hoses.
- Another good thing to have for the fire season is to have a battery-powered radio. This will keep you in contact with what’s happening should you lose power or internet access.
- Make sure you’ve got a fire extinguisher that is current and fully loaded.
- Run a mop or a wet cloth over your doors and windows when a fire is imminent even if you intend on leaving the property.
- Move any vehicles you have around the house to someplace far way.
- Turn off the main gas supply and if you have a gas cylinder attached to the barbecue, disconnect it and take it far away from the property.
- Close all the vents from your air conditioner.
We hope this helped you and your property stay safe and damage-free during these troubling times. Local governments provide great support resources. For example, this link provides a guide to protect your house from bushfires.
If you want to gather more information on how to help during the bushfires, visit our Resources and Support pages. If you want to read more blogs, check out our post about how you can help local wildlife.