A TOTAL FIRE BAN has been declared for the Greater Hunter, due to hot and windy conditions on the forecast today.
The Fire Danger Rating for the Hunter will be EXTREME today – the Hunter area included takes in Cessnock, Dungog, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Muswellbrook, Newcastle, Port Stephens, Singleton and the Upper Hunter.
The ban means no fires may be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended. However, gas and electric barbecues are allowed to be operated but must be under the direct control of an adult at all times.
The NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) provides the following advice under EXTREME fire conditions:
- Take action now to protect your life and property.
- These are dangerous fire conditions.
- Check your bush fire plan and ensure that your property is fire ready.
- If a fire starts, take immediate action.
- If you and your property are not prepared to the highest level, go to a safer location well before the fire impacts.
- Reconsider travel through bush fire risk areas.
Please note: The NSW RFS may issue a Harvest Safety Alert for areas of heightened risk. Harvest operators should monitor conditions and regularly check that they are operating within guidelines.
Total Fire Ban rules and a map of current Total Fire Ban areas are listed at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au.
There are currently half a dozen bush fires in the Hunter region but all of them are currently listed as being under control.