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Media Release

Burning program protects Kimberley’s future
Tuesday 24 April 2012 – 10:00 AM

FESA’s northern burning program has officially started with burns taking place throughout the Kimberley region.
 
The prescribed burns are being undertaken in the Kimberley region to reduce the impact of devastating bushfires that occur late in the dry season.
 
Acting Regional Director Grant Pipe said prescribed burning in the Kimberley was vital in helping to protect life, livestock and the unique Kimberley ecosystem.
 
“The fire breaks that are created lessen the impact of bushfires on local communities, infrastructure and the environment,” he said.
 
“By carrying out aerial controlled burning now, fuel loads are reduced and a buffer is provided that prevents fires from spreading.
 
It can also provide a suitable area from which firefighters and pastoralists can fight an uncontrolled fire.”
 
The program focuses on reducing the fuel loads near road sides and on pastoral land.
 
FESA works in partnership with Local Government, Department of Environment and Conservation and participating pastoral stations to plan and implement the prescribed burning program.
 

“The program has been running for many years and is constantly under review and improvement,” Mr Pipe said.

“On average around 30 pastoral stations participate and this year 38 burns are planned.”

Mr Pipe also reminded tourists and motorists to be careful when travelling through affected areas.
 
“If you come across smoke on the road you should turn your headlights on and drive slowly,” he said.
 
"Remember that if you cannot see clearly, pull over to the side of the road, keep your headlights and hazard lights on, and wait until the smoke clears.
 
“Keep a close watch for firefighters and emergency service vehicles on the road and always follow any directions given by emergency service personnel.”
 
Prescribed burns are being conducted east of Fitzroy Crossing progressing towards Halls Creek from April 16. Prescribed burning is also being conducted on pastoral stations, which may produce smoke that could be visible on the Great Northern Highway.
 
People do not need to ring 000 to report controlled burning fires unless they believe lives or homes are under threat.
 

For more information, property owners can contact FESA’s Kimberley Regional Office on 9158 3200.
 

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