Help wanted for fire plans

By Alesha Capone

Land and fire management agencies are calling on residents of Tarneit, Truganina, Melton and Wyndham Vale to develop plans to reduce the bushfire risk to households near Melbourne’s western grasslands.

Forest Fire Management Victoria’s forest and fire planning regional manager, Damien Taylor, said the planning process aimed to address fire risks on public and private land.

He said organisations involved in the planning included the CFA, Emergency Management Victoria and councils.

“We’ve had a lot of feedback from communities in Melbourne’s eastern, more forested region, but we’ve had a less enthusiastic response from … Melbourne’s west,” Mr Taylor said.

“We now need community input into bushfire management strategies to help us strike the right balance.”

He said the organisations involved in the planning would also use technology, developed in partnership with the University of Melbourne, to identify areas around Melbourne’s western grasslands where grassfires could pose the greatest risk to human lives and property.

“Previously, this planning process focused on bushfire risk across public land,” Mr Taylor said.

“This time, we’ve broadened our focus to help determine where to target fuel management on public and private land.”