South Australian Country Fire Service Promotions Unit

Raising awareness of the roles, training and activities of CFS Volunteers state-wide

 

Prevention Services

Built Environment and Bushfire Prevention

Fire Prevention brochures

Key directions

  • Provide information and advice to the community about fire risks.
  • Empower the community to better protect itself.
  • Implement an effective framework for prevention planning and community safety.
  • Coordinate, support and encourage fire prevention and community safety planning by local government and other agencies.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of prevention and community safety programs.

Community Safety

Provide information and advice to the community about fire risks. The SA Country Fire Service (CFS) continues to provide fire safety advice and education programs to organisations and communities throughout semi-urban and rural South Australia. Programs such as Community Fire Safe are conducted to provide support and advice to residents in high bushfire risk areas.

Located in each of the six CFS Regions are Regional Prevention Officers who provide direct support to local council Fire Prevention Officers and Regional Bushfire Prevention Committees for the development of district and regional bushfire prevention planning.

Officers of the CFS Building Fire Safety Section and the Development Assessment Unit also provide fire prevention advice to planning authorities and developers on development proposals.

Community Education

A Community Fire Safe Area sign Empower the community to better protect itself. The CFS and SGIC have entered into a strategic alliance for the provision of community bushfire safety education programs and material. Financial support was provided by SGIC to enable CFS to continue the expansion of the Community Fire Safe, Bushfire Blitz programs and the SGIC Fire Bans Information Hotline.

Surveys conducted throughout the year have revealed there has been a growing demand for the services provided by these programs which, by engaging the community and working with them to identify strategies to resolve community safety issues, have lead to changes in behaviour.

The Community Fire Safe Program enables the formation of community groups in bushfire prone areas (currently metropolitan fringe areas) to develop bushfire safety strategies for the community and families in it. The program has been running since 1997.

Implement an effective framework for prevention planning and community safety. Five facilitators initiated thirty-one new groups and met with seventy-five existing groups. The program continues to focus efforts in high-risk communities predominantly within Region One, Mount Lofty Ranges (Region One covers the Adelaide Hills, Fleurieu Peninsula and Kangaroo Island).

CFS will be seeking to extend this program to other high-risk areas of the state, particularly the South East and Lower Eyre Peninsula regions.

To date 1850 households in high bushfire risk areas have participated in the program.

Bushfire Blitz

Prior to the Fire Danger Season the State Government allocated additional funding to CFS for the development and implementation of the Bushfire Blitz program, which will continue during the next three years. The program is structured to inform residents in high fire risk areas about bushfire safety preparation and is designed to reach people who do not wish to be involved in longer-term prevention and preparedness programs.

Meetings are held in community halls, on street corners and at CFS Brigade stations. Residents attending meetings are provided with information on how to plan, prepare and survive bushfires. Between December 2003 and February 2004 ninety meetings were held with over 1580 residents in attendance.

Winter fire safety campaign

The strategic alliance formed with Duracell (Gillette) prior to the 2002-03 financial year continued to provide funding to promote the ‘Change your clock, change your smoke alarm battery’ campaign through advertising and editorial public relations. The campaign, conducted in conjunction with SAMFS, was introduced in the previous year with continuing success. CFS continues to develop the partnership arrangement with SAMFS for the development, production and conduct of joint agency winter fire safety education programs.

Coordinate, support and encourage fire prevention and community safety planning by local government and other agencies. To enable local government to undertake their fire prevention responsibilities, CFS trained and accredited an additional ten local government Fire Prevention Officers.

District Bushfire Prevention Plans have been audited against the requirements of the Fire & Emergency Services Act 2005, and the audit process will be continued to ensure annual review of all plans.

Building Fire Safety

The CFS Built Environment Fire Safety Unit provides a consultancy service to planning authorities and developers for industrial and commercial development and provides CFS representation on local government Building Fire Safety Committees.

CFS identified a need to upgrade fire alarm monitoring equipment and processes and was successful in obtaining additional funding over a three-year period to commence the process which will begin in the 2004-05 financial year.

Development Control in Bushfire Prone Areas. The CFS Development Assessment Unit provides a consultative service to planning authorities and developers on new residential and tourist accommodation proposals in designated ‘Bushfire Prone Areas’.

Prevention and Community Safety

The SA Premier’s Bushfire Summit. The CFS continued to manage the implementation of the fifteen initiatives developed by the Premier's Bushfire Summit held on 23 May 2003. The initiatives cover the three major concerns defined by the Summit:

  • Development Control in Bushfire Prone Areas
  • Community education, and
  • Fuel management on public land.

A number of working parties consisting of representatives from the State and Local Government and other organisations have been formed to investigate issues and develop strategies to adopt the initiatives.

Achievements to date include the:

  • Introduction of expiation notices for offences under the Fire & Emergency Services Act 2005, and Regulations
  • Development of draft guidelines for fuel breaks and fire access tracks on Government land
  • Development of a draft prescribed burning policy for government land management agencies
  • Adoption of the CFS community safety education programs of Community Fire Safety and Bushfire Blitz and permanent CFS programs
  • Amendment of the Regulations under the Development Act 1993 to give CFS 'Powers of Direction' for development on Bushfire Prone Areas, and
  • Development of an amended policy and mapping process to enable planning authorities to define areas for declaration as Bushfire Prone Areas.
  • Future initiatives

  • Upgrade fire alarm monitoring equipment and processes
  • Expand Community Fire Safety Awareness, and
  • To review and revise the children’s education program ‘Project Fireguard’.

Extract from the CFS Annual Report 2003-2004