Second property owners are being asked to take part in an Australian first research project that aims to understand how they prepare for bushfire.
The Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) has invited landowners who live in the Perth metropolitan area and have another property in regional Western Australia to complete a survey on bushfire risk, preparation and response.
DFES Community Engagement Director Suellen Shea said there was an estimated 11,000 householders who owned second properties in high bushfire risk areas in the southern half of the State.
“While many fulltime residents understand the risk of bushfire, people who do not live at their second homes on a consistent basis may not be adequately prepared or understand their risk,” Ms Shea said.
“Despite second homes usually holding special memories, such as being used for family holidays or special events, people often leave them unattended and not prepared for the risk of fire.
“Bushfires happen every year and it is everyone’s responsibility to prepare, even if you don’t live permanently in the home.”
Ms Shea said the direct mail survey was the first of its type for an Australian fire and emergency management authority, and DFES would share the research results with interstate counterparts.
“Information gained from the survey will help us better communicate with property owners and assist them in making adequate preparations for their second home in the event of a fire,” she said.
Designed to take 15 to 20 minutes, the survey includes questions on how people use their second properties and how they are maintained, and seeks their opinions on bushfire preparedness, response, resilience and support in the community.
The survey has been targeted at second property owners in the below local government areas:
- City of Busselton
- Shire of Albany
- Shire of Augusta-Margaret River
- Shire of Capel
- Shire of Dandaragan
- Shire of Denmark
- Shire of Greater Geraldton
- Shire of Jerramungup
- Shire of Waroona.
Selected participants were mailed the survey earlier this month and people are asked to return the form by 31 May 2013. People can also complete the survey online via the supplied link on the questionnaire paper.
If you did not receive the survey in the mail, and would like to assist DFES in the research, please contact DFES Community Engagement Coordinator Rachel Jones on 9395 9816
Media Contact: Media and Public Affairs on 9225 5955.