Fire fighting

Council supports an annual coordinated agency operation called Operation Cool Burn, where a range of Government and Community based organisations work together to protect our community from the risk of bushfires. 

Working together with Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES), the initiative aims to spearhead mitigation activities across the state to reduce fire risk in bushfire-prone areas ahead of the season.

Prescribed fuel reduction burns conducted ahead of the fire season play an important role in alleviating risk, however they form only one part of the overarching mitigation plan.

 We carry out a range of activities for bushfire mitigation including:

  • supporting Queensland Fire and Emergency Services in notifying the community of fire season and how to be prepared
  • bushfire management planning
  • development controls through the Planning Scheme and local laws (e.g. overgrown properties)
  • constructing and maintaining firebreaks and management access tracks
  • maintenance of fire buffer zones
  • maintenance of fire hydrants and water access points for use by firefighters
  • in coordination with Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, we conduct planned burns on Council land to reduce wildfire risk and maintain the health of bushland
  • assisting emergency services in the management of disasters.

 

Planned bushfire mitigation activities for 2021

Learn more about the specific activities we have planned in preparation for the upcoming bushfire season.

 

Council has multiple fire trails in the eastern escarpment area. These trails are regularly maintained and have undergone hazard reduction burn work over the past five years at planned intervals, as per the requirements of the vegetation in this area which varies from dry open eucalypt woodland to wet southern facing eucalypt woodland.

Prescribed burns

Areas from Jubilee Park to Picnic Point have been subject to both prescribed burning and manual fuel reduction activities between 2018 and 2020, therefore no additional prescribed burning is planned in this area in 2021.

Areas below East Street and at Picnic Point will be considered for inclusion in the 2022 prescribed burning schedule.

Scheduled maintenance

Although we will not be undertaking prescribed burns in the area this year, the fuel reduced buffer zones and fire management trails will continue to be maintained regularly as part of our bushfire mitigation plan. Five interventions are scheduled across the year.

Fire management trail upgrades

In addition to the regular scheduled maintenance, significant upgrades to the fire management trails in Jubilee Park and McKnight Park are in progress.

To further alleviate risk to the community, Council is currently pursuing planning and construction of fire management trails on the Council land between Culliford Drive and Flagstone Creek Road.

Multiple, well-maintained fire trails exist in the areas around Mount Peel Bushland Park and Cranley Park.

The vegetation in this area is predominately grassy eucalypt woodland with cool burns planned at intervals as per the requirements of this vegetation type.

Prescribed burns

Council’s two major landholdings in this area, Mount Peel Bushland Park and Cranley Park, have both been subjected to prescribed fuel reduction burning in 2018, therefore no additional prescribed burning is planned in this area in 2021.

These areas will be considered again in future years.

Fire management trails

Although we will not be undertaking burns in the area this year, the fire management trails will continue to be maintained as part of our bushfire mitigation plan. Five interventions are scheduled during the year.

Prescribed burns

Hazard reduction burns will be facilitated on the following land in 2021:

  • Council Officers and Indigenous Rangers will conduct cool controlled burns between 30 August and 1 September (weather permitting) on selected roads in the Millmerran district to control invasive weeds. The Grieves Road Stock Route has been chosen for the start of the program. The cool burns will also be conducted along Lindenmayer Road which runs off Grieves Road. Council will notify adjoining landholders about the planned burns.

Fire management trails

New fire trails have been identified by the Rural Fire Service (RFS) as strategic locations to increase protection of the community in the event of a bushfire. We’ve been working with landholders in these areas to create an agreement for the trails to be made. Once constructed, they’ll provide a safe point of access for fire crews to carry out firefighting operations.

The development of these trails has been made possible by funding received in partnership with the RFS under the Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy’s Queensland Bushfire Category C Flexible Funding Grants program.

This network of strategic fire trails will be further developed over the coming years as further funding becomes available.

Multiple Council reserves located within the Cecil Plains community are classified as bushfire-prone areas. These areas all contain fire sensitive vegetation which do not respond well to frequent and/or hot fire.

Fire management planning is ongoing to address both risk management and ecological concerns for these areas.

Prescribed burns

No prescribed burning is planned at Cecil Plains in 2021.

These areas will be considered for inclusion in the 2022 prescribed burning schedule.

Fire management trails

In recent years, Council has constructed a number of fire management trails in this area. Scheduled maintenance on these trails will continue throughout the year as part of our bushfire mitigation activities.

Crows Nest township is bounded on its eastern side by a combination of Council reserves, public and privately-owned land.

Council works closely with all involved agencies to coordinate bushfire mitigation efforts and ensure adequate management of both risk and ecological concerns.

Prescribed burns

The Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) will conduct planned burn operations within Crows Nest National Park (Perseverance Section) starting Saturday 15 January 2022, weather permitting, as part of the annual hazard reduction/conservation management program for parks and forests.

Smoke may be seen to the south of Perseverance Dam Road and East of the locality of Peachey and Southeast of Crows Nest township.

Persons with respiratory or other health problems should seek medical advice on mitigating the effects of smoke inhalation and should close windows and doors, and keep medications close by if suffering from a respiratory illness.

Smoke can decrease visibility on the roads, so it is important that motorists drive safely to the conditions. Please observe all signage, barriers and directions from rangers and do not enter closed areas. For more information visit the Queensland Park alerts website.

Fire management trails

New fire trails have been identified by the Rural Fire Service (RFS) as strategic locations to increase protection of the community in the event of a bushfire. We’ve been working with landholders in these areas to create an agreement for the trails to be made. Once constructed, they’ll provide a safe point of access for fire crews to carry out firefighting operations.

The development of these trails has been made possible by funding received in partnership with the RFS under the Department of Communities, Housing and Digital Economy’s Queensland Bushfire Category C Flexible Funding Grants program.

This network of strategic fire trails will be further developed over the coming years as further funding becomes available.

Prescribed burns

Significant wild fire events impacted the Lake Cressbrook area in late 2019. While the grass has regenerated quickly in this area, further prescribed burning is not recommended in 2021.

Fire management trails

Fire management trails will continue to undergo regular scheduled maintenance throughout 2021 as part of our bushfire mitigation activities.

Upgrade of infrastructure

We’re working with Ergon Energy to improve the resilience of the electrical infrastructure which powers the water network at Lake Cressbrook. In 2019, during the Pechey bushfire, this infrastructure was affected, and other parts threatened. The project will replace the timber poles along the 3km power line with fire-resistant composite poles. These new poles can withstand bushfires, enabling emergency response teams to focus on protecting other areas under threat.

The value of the project is over $2.5 million, including in-kind support from Ergon Energy and was funded by the Queensland Reconstruction Authority’s Local Economic Recovery Program.

These projects form part of the Eastern Queensland Bushfire Local Recovery Plan created by our Local Disaster Management Group. This plan aims to support the disaster recovery for our bushfire impacted communities and improve resilience for future events.

Prescribed burns

Lake Perseverance was subjected to significant wild fire events in late 2019. Areas impacted by the fires in 2019 are not recommended for additional prescribed burning at this time.

The area located between the pumphouse access road and the dam wall, which did not burn in 2019 or 2020, will be included in the schedule of prescribed burns for the 2021 bushfire season.

Dates for the cool burn will be provided as soon as possible.

Fire management trails

Fire management trails will continue to undergo regular scheduled maintenance throughout 2021 as part of our bushfire mitigation activities.

Upgrade of infrastructure

We’re working with Ergon Energy to improve the resilience of the electrical infrastructure which powers the water network at Lake Perseverance. In 2019, during the Pechey bushfire, this infrastructure was affected, and other parts threatened. The project will replace the timber poles along the 3km power line with fire-resistant composite poles. These new poles can withstand bushfires, enabling emergency response teams to focus on protecting other areas under threat.

The value of the project is over $2.5 million, including in-kind support from Ergon Energy and was funded by the Queensland Reconstruction Authority’s Local Economic Recovery Program.

These projects form part of the Eastern Queensland Bushfire Local Recovery Plan created by our Local Disaster Management Group. This plan aims to support the disaster recovery for our bushfire impacted communities and improve resilience for future events.

Prescribed burns

The prescribed fuel reduction burn on the North Western shores of Lake Cooby (postponed in 2020) has been rescheduled for 2021.

Dates for the prescribed burn will be provided as soon as possible.

Fire management trails

A number of fire management trails exist in this area. Scheduled maintenance on these trails will continue throughout the year as part of our bushfire mitigation plan.

 

Related Documents

Preparing for the fire season

Preparing for emergencies

Queensland Government Get Ready website