26 April 2023

It's time for hazard reduction burns in coastal forests ahead of summer

| Katrina Condie
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Hazard reduction burns are being carried out on the Far South Coast. Photo: FCNSW.

Forestry Corporation of NSW is planning ahead for next summer, with a series of hazard reduction burns planned.

From Wednesday (26 April), hazard reduction burning is being carried out near Bermagui and Eden to help protect forests and neighbouring private property against wildfires.

Smoke may be visible in the Bermagui and Nullica State Forests and from surrounding areas, including the Princes Highway, Nethercote Road, Wallaga Lake Road, Cobargo Bermagui Road, Scenic Forest Drive and Broadwater Road until Saturday (29 April).

The Bermagui State Forest burn is around two kilometres northwest of Bermagui and is planned to treat 221 hectares of bushland.

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The Nullica State Forest burn is happening about three kilometres northwest of Eden and is planned to treat 885 hectares of bushland.

Forestry Corporation Protection supervisor Peter Carstairs said autumn was one of the key times to reduce the forest fuel load and help protect communities and the environment against bushfires.

“We had a very mild fire season, which has recently wrapped up. It’s now time to start preparing for next summer,” Mr Carstairs said.

“There’s a narrow window of opportunity to safely complete hazard reduction burns — when it’s not too hot or damp and the wind conditions limit the impact of smoke on neighbours.

“We will be taking advantage of favourable conditions over the coming months to reduce fuel in local forests.”

The hazard reduction burns are visible on the ‘Fires Near Me’ app as planned events.

Forestry Corporation firefighters will carefully monitor all controlled burns to ensure the weather is suitable and the burns stay within containment lines.

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Small-scale strategic hazard reduction burns were recently carried out in Bodalla State Forest near Narooma.

The coastal strip between Nowra and the Victorian border is one of the most fire-prone regions of Australia and managing fuel levels by completing hazard reduction burns is critical to Forestry Corporation’s capacity to manage wildfires over summer.

Forestry Corporation is responsible for more than 2.2 million hectares of native and planted forests and has been formally involved in firefighting in NSW for 100 years.

For more information about hazard reduction burns, contact the Forestry Corporation Batemans Bay Office on 1300 880 548.

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