Community Safety

CFA have updated two publications that will help you to pass on fire safety information to your community.

The Members Quick Reference Guide recognises that all CFA members are highly respected in their community. This guide helps you create conversations with local residents, answer their questions and promote fire safety.

This year's guide includes grassfire key messages specifically for people living on the urban fringe, updated house fire statistics and updated images and descriptions of top resources. As well as being on Brigades Online, you can ask your district office for a printed copy.

The new Fire Ready Kit includes a section on 'What to do to stay informed', including where to find warnings and updates. There's a strong emphasis on the practicalities of planning, beginning with the basics of preparing before the fire season, through to planning what to do if fire is in the area and people can't leave.

Above all, this kit provides a step-by-step guide to leaving early with a blunt message about shared responsibility from Chief Officer Euan Ferguson. As Euan writes in the kit's foreword, "CFA – as always – will do everything we can to protect lives and property. But there is only so much we can do. There will never be enough firefighters, fire trucks and firefighting aircraft to have these resources at everyone's back door during a large bushfire. The responsibility for surviving the fire season is shared between emergency services and the community."

Highly detailed, the kit is not for every community member. But for those people engaged in bushfire planning who want up-to-date information, it's CFA's go-to document.

The Fire Ready Kit will be available in limited numbers from your district's community education coordinator from 22 November.

A shorter handout covering the basics of ratings, warnings, planning, preparation and leaving early is currently in the works. This handout is designed for use at a wide range of events and targets a broad audience. Progress on this handout will be posted on news.cfa.vic.gov.au.

Chief Officer's Intent for the Summer Season

I recently delivered an intent for the summer season to CFA Operations Managers and Operations Officers. This will soon be circulated more widely. However, I want to reinforce a number of points in the Execution part of that Intent Statement: Due consideration shall be given to the following factors:

  • The primacy of life. This includes the lives of emergency responders.
  • Lead your team in a way that ensures everyone comes home safe.
  • Take care of yourself and your team.
  • We work as one (with our emergency management partners).
  • Give priority to issuing warnings to people about risks.
  • Hit new fires hard and fast.
  • Greater use of aircraft.
  • Invest in prior planning and preparation.
  • We work with citizens to protect what is important to them.
  • Exercise foresight.
  • Understand your leader's intent (2 levels up) and ensure your intent is understood (2 levels down).
  • We do our best, but we recognise that everyone can always do better.

News Roundup - 28 October 2013

Operations

CFA News

Seasonal climate outlook - November 2013 to January 2014

Blacksmith's Tree Project - October 2013 Update

Presumptive legislation – the Firefighters’ Cancer Law

Please find attached our latest update on presumptive legislation – the firefighters' cancer law – for CFA volunteers.

VFBV is pursuing a change in the law to provide a fairer and simpler path to compensation for firefighters who contract typical firefighter cancers.

We are pursuing this because current Victorian law leaves you with an almost impossible task – you are entitled to cancer compensation, but to get it you must show evidence of fires or incidents you attended that might be 10 or 15 years ago and prove on the balance of probabilities which incidents or which toxic exposures caused your cancer.

The attached document explains the issue and gives an update on progress in other states.

We urge you to write to your local newspaper or contact your local MP, calling for the support of all of the political parties on this important issue.

Regards

Peter Beaton
Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria
Representing CFA volunteers

News Roundup - 30 September 2013

Radio re-flashing

  • All brigade radios are being "reflashed" (having a software upgrade) on Wednesday 9 October in readiness for digital dispatch.  
  • District 12, including Kinglake West and Kinglake, will be converting to digital prior to the fire season, so this update is required for us to support into their areas.

BoM Seasonal Climate Outlook:

Statewide Training Calendar:

From the CO:

From the CEO:

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