Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) is asking residents to get a head start on this year’s bushfire season by using time at home to prepare their properties. 

QFES Commissioner Greg Leach urged the community to be proactive in the wake of a severe 2019 bushfire season, which burnt more than 7.7 million hectares of land and destroyed 49 houses, 68 sheds and five commercial buildings. 

“The impact of the prolonged and heightened 2019 bushfire season should prompt residents to spend time now preparing,” Mr Leach said.

“All Queenslanders will remember the intense bushfire season the state experienced last year and how it affected them.

“An adequately prepared property can help reduce the severity of a bushfire, which is why everyone in rural and urban areas need to take simple steps now to prepare their properties.

“Residents can remove leaves and leaf litter, clear gutters, trim overhanging branches and keep lawns short to prevent bush and grass fires from starting and spreading on their property.”

Mr Leach encouraged residents to reach out to their local Rural Fire Service brigade if they needed assistance. 

“Residents can contact their local rural fire brigade and fire wardens for advice, assistance and ideas on how to prepare their individual properties,” he said. 

“We will be working to minimise the bushfire risk, but bushfire prevention is a community effort.

“QFES is asking, ‘what will you be doing to prepare for a bushfire’? 

Mr Leach said maintaining a Bushfire Survival Plan was a great way to be prepared and could be completed by visiting the Rural Fire Service website. 

“A well-thought-out plan could make all the difference once bushfire season is underway,” he said. 

“This is because a plan should clearly state what action will be taken if a bushfire is in the area.

“Combined with property preparation, a bushfire survival plan is an effective measure individuals and families can take ahead of this year’s bushfire season.” 

People can visit ruralfire.qld.gov.au for more information on preparing for bushfire season and completing a Bushfire Survival Plan.