Victorians are reminded to play it safe and do the right thing while enjoying state forests and national parks this Australia Day long weekend.

Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic) Chief Fire Officer Chris Hardman said: “Whether you’re camping, walking, riding or driving this long weekend, we all have a responsibility when it comes to making sure people take care in Victoria’s parks and state forests.”

“Illegal campfires, the dumping of rubbish, damage to forest roads and vandalism is unacceptable, so we encourage everyone to respect the bush and use bins provided or take their rubbish home with them,” Mr Hardman said.

“Many camping grounds in state forests are free for visitors to use and enjoy, and campers should use common sense and set a good example by behaving responsibly.

“Approximately 10 per cent of Victoria’s fires are caused by campfires. There are on-the-spot fines up to $476 for people who do not comply with campfire rules, and a person can face a maximum penalty of up to $15,872 if the matter is prosecuted in Court.

“Extreme heat kills more Australians than any natural disaster, drink plenty of water and look after others, particularly those most at risk such as your neighbour living alone, the elderly, the young, people with a medical condition and don’t forget about your pets.

“Animals can also be affected by hot weather, if you come across wildlife that appear lethargic, non-responsive or sick, contact a wildlife rehabilitation organisation, vet or Wildlife Shelter or Foster Carer for further assistance.”

More information on the Total Fire Ban, fire danger ratings and Heat Health Alerts is available at http://emergency.vic.gov.au

For more information on campfire safety visit https://www.ffm.vic.gov.au/permits-and-regulations/fire-restrictions-and-regulations

Page last updated: 25/01/19