PLAN FOR BLAZE: Fire experts urge the Roma district to be prepared for unprecedented weather conditions leading into summer.
PLAN FOR BLAZE: Fire experts urge the Roma district to be prepared for unprecedented weather conditions leading into summer. Craig Warhurst

FIRE PLAN: Bushfire season ignites early

THE dust storm experienced on Saturday was only the beginning of the dangerously dry and hot conditions expected for the region in the coming months.

The blaze that engulfed Stanthorpe has shown the southern Queensland bushfire season has come earlier than in any year on record, as dozens of fires burnt across Queensland.

Rural Fire Service Inspector and area director Goetz Graf said landowners and residents in the Roma district needed to be prepared for unprecedented weather conditions.

"Our region is pretty much from west of Dulacca to the Northern Territory, the Carnarvon area and New South Wales on the southern border and we have very unseasonal fire weather,” Inspector Graf said.

"These unprecedented weather conditions are earlier than expected and are associated with very dry conditions, extreme dry soil moisture content, hot conditions and very low humidity.

"We believe leading up to Christmas we may face more heat waves in the area.”

Inspector Graf said looking at weather conditions the bushfire season started early and landowners needed to have a plan in place.

"Landowners need to have a bushfire survival plan in place, which basically means everyone on a property needs to think about where they are, what they need to prepare for, their evacuation points, what they need to take with them including spare shirts, medication, water, what they are going to do for animals on the property and communications,” he said.

"Very high fire danger rating to severe fire danger rating is what residents in this area need to be most concerned about.

"Any hot work that could cause ignition, including grating, slashing, grinding and welding, should be avoided.”

Maranoa council advises residents to check any previous fires and extinguish hot spotsas windy conditions could reignite the former fire.

If you see a fire and have concerns report it immediately to Triple Zero (000) - the sooner QFES can attend the scene, the better.


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