DUE to the number of fires burning across the state and the current dry conditions, Tasmania Fire Service has taken the unprecedented step of declaring a four day total fire ban.
A Total Fire Ban has been declared for the whole of Tasmania from midnight tonight, January 22, until midnight on Tuesday, January 26.
This ban is designed to prevent fire escapes from fires such as camp fires, back yard burning and other similar activities.
Campers and others who intend to cook in the open should plan to use gas or electric stoves. Operators of agricultural machinery used to harvest crops or slash grass are encouraged to take particular care, although these are not included in this ban.
The Tasmania Fire service encourages everyone who lives in or near the bush to take responsibility for their safety, the safety of their families and their property by having a bushfire survival plan and be prepared to implement that plan if required.
a) All fire permits granted will cease to have effect for this period; and b) No fire permits will be issued during this declaration; and c) The occupier of land (in any part of the State to which this declaration relates) where a fire occurs during this declaration shall immediately after becoming aware of the fire:- (i) Take diligent steps to extinguish the fire or to prevent it from spreading; and (ii) Report the fire to Tasmania Fire Service by calling 000.
During the Total Fire Ban it is a criminal offence to:
a) Light a fire in the open air on any land for any purpose; and b) Use machines or apparatus in the open air that may cause a fire.
The following are not subject to this declaration: a) Fire used in fire suppression conducted by Tasmania Fire Service, Forestry Tasmania and Parks & Wildlife Service; b) Gas stoves and gas or electric barbeques and enclosed solid fuel ovens that do not release sparks and flames into the open air provided they are clear of flammable material for a distance of 3 metres; c) Cutting and welding machines or similar used for commercial purposes and in the emergency restoration of critical infrastructure including transport, communications, electricity, gas, water & sewerage with risk mitigation measures put in place and are not within 10m of flammable material, or where a hot work permit has been issued by the Tasmania Fire Service. d) Fireworks on Australia Day that comply with the appropriate fireworks permit.
More information about total fire bans, other fire use restrictions and current fires is available on the TFS website at www.fire.tas.gov.au