Energex and Queensland Fire and Emergency Services urge extra caution when hazard reduction burning near power assets
Property owners are being warned to take extra precautions as they prepare for the bush fire season.
More and more people are getting set for hazard reduction burns and Energex and the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services are urging them to take care around the power network.
Energex Work Group Leader, Lawrence Hitchcock, highlighted the dangers people conducting burns could pose if the fires get too close to power poles and other electrical assets.
“More than a dozen power poles were brought down by landowner’s burns getting out of control last year bringing down poles, powerlines and cutting supply to entire communities in some cases, Mr Hitchcock said.
“In addition to the inconvenience of widespread power disruptions, fallen power lines can cause serious injury or even death to people and livestock that come into contact with them.
“Just as troubling is a power pole that’s only partially burnt because it will be significantly weakened and potentially snap during high winds or storm activity without warning.
Landowners who are about to burn are asked to ensure vegetation is cleared within a five metre radius of the base of a pole.
Rural Fire Service Acting Assistant Commissioner Peter Hollier said taking precautions before and during hazard reduction burns could significantly minimise the risk of damaging property and electricity infrastructure.
“It is imperative landholders are well aware of their surroundings and remain vigilant to ensure they, their families and properties are safe while conducting any bushfire mitigation work,” Mr Hollier said.
“To minimise the chances of fire damaging power poles and property, I would encourage property owners to trim or clear any long grass, foliage and rubbish around their electricity infrastructure and remain with any planned burns they carry out.
“If your council area is not currently drought declared, dampening the radius with water can also reduce the chances of accidental damage to property.
People are reminded they need to apply for a free permit from their local fire warden before lighting a fire larger than two metres in any direction.