HARVEST & VEHICLE MOVEMENT BANS
From time to time during the Restricted and Prohibited Burning period the Shire of Dardanup Chief Bushfire Control Officer may impose a ban on the use or operation of any engine, vehicle, plant, equipment or machinery in the area. This ban is commonly referred to as a Harvest and Vehicle Movement Ban (HVMB).
A HVMB is imposed to restrict activities that are likely to cause a bushfire or contribute to the spread of a bushfire when the expected weather conditions indicate that if a wildfire was to start, it would be dangerous, destructive and difficult to stop once started. On days when the fire danger index for the area is or exceeds 35, a HVMB must be imposed. During the bushfire season, the fire danger index is monitored throughout the day through various means including through physical weather readings taken in the field and through the monitoring of weather stations.
The following is an example of the activities NOT PERMITTED during a HVMB:
- Harvesting operations are not permitted
- Any “hot works” (eg welding, grinding, cutting, heating etc) in the “open air” are not permitted
- Other – Use or operation of any engine, vehicle, plant, equipment or machinery in the area likely to cause a bushfire or contribute to the spread of a bushfire (eg motorbikes, quad bikes or other motorised vehicles in bush or off-road areas including paddocks)
The following is an example of the activities PERMITTED during a HVMB:
- Movement of Vehicles on “gazetted roads” – as described in Bush Fires regulation 24A(1) and Road Traffic Act 1974 section 5.1)
- Movement of vehicles on a lane, driveway, yard or other area that provides access to, or a parking facility at, any residential, farming or business premises, if the area has been sufficiently cleared of inflammable material to prevent the escape of fire.
- Use or operation of a vehicle if it is for the prevention of an immediate and serious risk to the health or safety of a person or livestock, and only if all reasonable precautions have been taken to prevent the activity from creating a bushfire danger
- Use or operations of vehicles and undertaking of “hot works” by those persons holding a current Exemption under Bush Fires Act 1954 s. 22C (exemption from Total Fire Bans).
HVMBs are declared locally and announced on ABC 684AM as well as on the Shire of Dardanup website.
It is your responsibility to determine if a ban has been imposed and to establish whether any planned activity is permitted when a ban is in place.
TOTAL FIRE BAN
A Total Fire Ban (TFB) is declared by the Department of Fire and Emergency Services on days when fires are most likely to threaten lives and property. This is because of predicted extreme fire weather or when there are already widespread fires and firefighting resources are stretched. Occasionally TFBs may be declared outside of a fire season (such as in May or June) due to other factors such as higher temperatures and expected strong winds preceding a storm front.
On a Total Fire Ban day, it is illegal to light an open-air fire or conduct any activity that could start a fire. You can find the full list of prohibited activities and further information on the DFES website here.