Yanchep fire alert goes out: residents should be ‘bush fire ready’

EMERGENCY service representatives said residents should be ‘bush fire ready’ as the fire season approaches, at a meeting in Yanchep last month.

Representatives from the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES), City of Wanneroo and Quinns Rocks Volunteer Bush Fire Brigade (QRVBFB) spoke at the August Two Rocks Yanchep Residents Association meeting.

Resident Jane Senior asked about evacuation plans when there was a bush fire and where people should go.

“There were a couple of times earlier this year when we thought we might have to evacuate our house, but I didn’t know where we should go,” she said.

The City’s senior emergency management and community safety officer Resmie Greer said information about evacuation centres would be on the City’s website during emergencies, based on circumstances during fires.

“There are five evacuation centres (but) there’s no point in us telling you where they all are until they open,” she said.

“The closest one we would open is (the Phil Renkin Recreation Centre in) Two Rocks, depending on which way the fire is going.”

DFES community engagement officer Lauren McDonnell said information would also be broadcast on ABC radio, posted on Twitter and available by calling the DFES information line.

“We never know where the fires are going to start and which direction they are going,” she said.

“Sometimes it will jump straight to an emergency warning.

“You need to know where you would go and when you are going to go.”

Two Rocks resident Anne Zanki asked whether there were evacuation centres for large livestock, including horses, and was told there was limited space at the Ashby animal care centre, but livestock owners should have back-up plans through their own networks.

The speakers said residents should form a ‘bush fire ready’ group that collectively prepared for potential emergencies.

With private landowners required to have firebreaks put in by mid-November, QRVBFB captain Troy Cole said there were also proposed legislative changes to make the state government responsible for firebreaks on its land.

Mr Cole said the brigade would host a community fire awareness day in Ridgewood on October 18, with representatives from all emergency services on hand to provide information.

BUSH FIRE READY

Advice: www.areyouready.wa.gov.au

Fire alerts: www.dfes.wa.gov.au/alerts

Information line: 13 3337

Radio: ABC, 6PR

Twitter: www.twitter.com/dfes_wa