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Fire Management Notice 

Managing the risk of bushfire is a shared responsibility: local government, state government agencies and the community all need to do their part. This page contains important information on what you need to do to ensure your property is well prepared for the threat of bushfire.

Every year the City of Albany issues a Fire Management Notice that outlines the minimum requirements for all land owners and occupiers to prepare for the bush fire season. The Fire Management Notice is issued under Section 33 of the Bush Fire Act 1954 and the requirements contained within are required by law. Non-compliance with the notice may result in penalties up to $5,000 per offence.

The notice is published in the local paper and the state Government Gazette.

The fire mitigation measures must be completed and remain in place for the following times (unless otherwise advertised):

AMENDMENT TO RESTRICTED BURNING DATES - Updated 23/05/2024

Be advised that the South West Sector Restricted Burning Permit dates have been extended up to and including the 11/06/2024 due to ongoing dry weather conditions.

 

Fire Management Notice 2023-2024

Fire Management Notice Download here.

Fire Management Notice Property Requirements

Properties up to 4000m2

The owner or occupier must reduce any fire hazard on their land by:

  • Creating and maintaining perimeter fire breaks*
  • Maintaining fine fuel load* over whole property to an average of two (2) tonnes per hectare
  • Creating and maintaining hazard specific fire breaks*
  • Creating and maintaining building protection zones*

See Definitions 

Properties 4000m2 to 50 Hectares

The owner or occupier must reduce any fire hazard on their land by:

  • Creating and maintaining perimeter fire breaks*
  • Maintaining fine fuel load* over whole property to an average of eight (8) tonnes per hectare
  • Creating and maintaining hazard specific fire breaks*
  • Creating and maintaining building protection zones*

See Definitions

Non-Agricultural Non-Cropping Non-Stock Properties over 50 Hectares

The owner or occupier must reduce any fire hazard on their land by:

  • Creating and maintaining perimeter fire breaks*
  • Creating and maintaining hazard specific fire breaks*
  • Creating and maintaining building protection zones*

See Definitions

Agricultural Cropping and/or Stock Properties over 50 Hectares

The owner or occupier must reduce any fire hazard on their land by:

  • Creating and maintaining perimeter fire breaks* are not compulsory but recommended
  • Creating and maintaining hazard specific fire breaks*
  • Creating and maintaining building protection zones*
  • Cropping paddocks must be broken into compartments not exceeding 250 hectares in area, each separated by internal trafficable breaks.

See Definitions

Inspections and Compliance

The Notice constitutes the City of Albany Fire Management Notice pursuant to Section 33 of the Bush Fires Act 1954. 

Land Owners or occupiers are required to prepare and maintain your property for the fire season and the Fire Management Notice sets out the actions you must take.

All fire mitigation measures must be in place by and maintained for the following periods:

Northeast Sector 01 October 2023 - 30 April 2024
Southwest Sector 01 December 2023 - 14 May 2024

City of Albany officers are authorised to enter private property, without notice to the owner, to inspect and confirm compliance with this notice.  If you fail to comply with the requirements contained within this Notice, penalties under the Bush Fire Act 1954 may apply.

The owner or occupier of land who has received notice under Section 33(1) of the Bush Fires Act 1954 and who fails or neglects in any respect duly to comply with the requirements of the notice is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of $5000.

The requirement to clear a fire break exempts an owner or occupier from needing a permit to clear native vegetation under the Environmental Protection Act 1986 however it does not authorise an owner or occupier to carry out excessive clearing. Clearing or removal of native vegetation beyond the requirements of this notice will require permission from other State Legislative Authorities.

The City of Albany, or a contractor engaged by the City, may enter your land to install fire breaks or reduce fuel loads with any expenses incurred charged to the owner or occupier.

The City may vary a requirement or condition of this Notice at its discretion.

Any ‘variation to requirements’ approval you hold may be declared void at any time by the City.

If you have concerns about a property not being compliant during the fire season, please contact the City of Albany on 6820 3000 or "Report It" online.

Definitions

Perimeter Fire Breaks

Are a continuous trafficable access track that has standard dimensions of 3 metres wide with 4 metres vertical clearance, located within 20 metres of the property boundary.  It can be created by ploughing, cultivating, scarifying, burning or clearing, including slashing and maintaining vegetation length below 50mm.

Hazard Specific Fire Breaks

Are a 3 metre low fuel area around inflammable hazards with vegetation maintained below 50mm.  Includes but is not limited to; haystacks, non-dwelling sheds, green electricity power domes, electricity power poles and fuel storage areas.

Fine Fuel Load

Are grasses and dead combustible vegetation matter less than 6mm in thickness. It does not include processed mulch below an average depth of 50mm.

Building Protection Zone

Is a defendable space immediately adjacent to a building no less than three metres wide, clear of inflammable vegetation and material. Further, combustible objects, plants, garden supplies such as mulches should be avoided within 10 metres of the building and vegetation kept to a minimum and kept in a low fuel state.

The building protection zone may reduce the likelihood and impact that direct flame contact, radiant heat or ember attack may have on buildings in the event of a bushfire.

Inflammable

means a substance or material easily ignited and capable of bursting into flames without the need of an ignition source.

Trafficable

Means the capacity to allow a firefighting truck or other firefighting vehicle to safely navigate the interior perimeter of the property safely without impediment.

Fire Break Information

Fire Breaks

A continuous trafficable access track that has standard dimensions of 3 metres wide with 4 metres vertical clearance, located within 20 metres of the property boundary.

It can be created by:

  • ploughing
  • cultivating
  • scarifying
  • burning; or
  • clearing, including slashing and maintaining vegetation length below 50mm.

Provisions of a trafficable area must be maintained for the duration of the fire season.

Hazard Specific Fire Breaks

Are a 3 metre low fuel area around inflammable hazards with vegetation maintained below 50mm.  Includes but is not limited to; haystacks, non-dwelling sheds, green electricity power domes, electricity power poles and fuel storage areas.

Variation to Requirements of the Notice

The City recognises that in some instances, land owners or occupiers may not physically be able to meet all of the fire management measures listed in the Fire Management Notice. 

If you cannot meet these Fire Management Notice requirements, you must apply for a variation or submit an approved Bush Fire Management Plan (BFMP).

Applications for variations must be submitted to the City of Albany by the 01 November 2023.

The City will only accept a BFMP completed by an accredited Bush Fire Planning and Design Practitioner. A BFMP can encompass single or multiple properties. All properties covered by a BFMP must comply with the conditions of the BFMP.

Please contact the City of Albany on 6820 3000.

Variation Considerations

A variation may be considered for the following reasons:

  • Property is steep and inaccessible and the installation of firebreaks or other fire mitigation measures would be dangerous or impractical.
  • Areas of rocky outcrops or cap stone naturally reduces the fire risk or prevents fire breaks from being installed.
  • Parts of the property is permanently water logged. (If only seasonally water logged, the Fire Management Requirements must be met as soon as the area has dried out sufficiently.)
  • Clearing of vegetation is likely to impact upon areas of declared rare flora or environmentally sensitive areas as defined under the Environmental Protection (Clearing of Native Vegetation) Regulations 2004.
  • Building positioning on block prevents the installation of an Building Protection Zone of the required size.
  • For properties over 50ha that are bona fide agricultural operations:
    • the grazing of stock that results in grassland being maintained at a height of 50mm or less;
    • seasonal cropping that results in low fuel load being maintained. (Please note that the fire management requirements relating to Agricultural and Machinery Operations must be complied with.).

Where a variation has been approved, any special conditions that have been placed on the variation must be complied with. Any requirements stipulated in the Notice for which a variation has not been granted must still be met.

How to apply for a variation:

  • Fill in a Variation to the Fire Management Notice (incomplete applications will not be processed.)
  • Include a detailed, legible current map showing alternative fire mitigation measures
  • Applications can only be made by land owners or by a person authorised to act on their behalf.
  • The City will notify the applicant in writing of the outcome of the application.
  • Where a fire management plan is provided as part of the application, it must be completed by an accredited Bushfire Planning and Design (BPAD) practitioner. Visit the Fire Protection Association (FPA) Australia at http://www.fpaa.com.au/bpad/practitioners.aspx to contact a BPAD practitioner.
  • Applications submitted to City of Albany, North Road Administration Building or email [email protected]

Subsidiary Information to the Fire Management Notice

Further Bushfire Protection Measures

In addition to regular maintenance of a Building protection Zone, further bushfire protection can be provided at any time by:

  • Ensuring gutters are free from vegetation
  • installing gutter guards or plugs
  • regular cleaning of underfloor spaces, or enclosing them to prevent gaps
  • trimming and removing dead plants or leaf litter
  • pruning climbing vegetation (such as vines) on a trellis, to ensure it does not connect to a building, particularly near windows and doors
  • removing vegetation in close proximity to a water tank to ensure it is not touching the sides of a tank; and/or 
  • following the requirements of the relevant local government section 33 fire break notice, which may include additional provisions such as locating wood piles more than 10 metres from a building.

Conservation, Special Residential, Rural Residential and Special Rural Zones

Properties located in these zones approved under subdivision plans in the Albany Local Planning Scheme Number 1 where required to comply with fire mitigation requirement conditions under the subdivision plan. If an owner or occupier of a property in one of these zones fails to maintain the mitigation requirements under the subdivision plan, then they will be subject to the requirements of this Fire Management Notice.

To check your property zone and subdivision mitigation requirements please contact City of Albany Planning Services on 6820 3000 or email [email protected].

Plantation Lots

Owners and lessees of plantation lots must comply with the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) Guidelines for Plantation Fire Protection (the guidelines) in addition to this fire management notice. The guidelines are available from the DFES website https://publications.dfes.wa.gov.au/.

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