National bushfire crisis sparks warning from Redlands mayor Karen Williams

BLAZE: A fire broke out at Amity in September. Photo: QYAC

BLAZE: A fire broke out at Amity in September. Photo: QYAC

MAYOR Karen Williams says the Redlands is well-prepared for the continuing fire season but residents should not let down their guard.

Cr Williams said devastating national bushfire emergencies were a powerful reminder for all local households to be prepared.

"Council and our local emergency services and agencies are continually working ... to prepare the city for local emergencies," she said.

"Extensive maintenance work has continued across the city's large network of trails in addition to new trail work at Lagoon Road, Russell Island and planning for further mainland fire trail infrastructure.

"Emergency response teams have also participated in several joint disaster rehearsal exercises designed to help ensure complete readiness."

Cr Williams said weather conditions had allowed 28 prescribed burns in 2019, an increase of approximately 65 per cent from 2018.

She said a council disaster planning team was watching conditions and receiving daily briefings from the State Disaster Co-ordination Centre.

"What people are experiencing in these (fire-affected) areas is a powerful reminder that when local fires, storms and floods do occur, our community must have their household emergency plans and know how to respond in an emergency," she said.

"Emergencies can happen fast and can be frightening and, at times, confusing."

While the Redlands has escaped serious blazes like those experienced in the nearby Scenic Rim in 2019, some locals have been affected by bushfires this season.

Properties were threatened by a Mount Cotton Road fire in December and some North Stradbroke Island residents evacuated their homes while a fire burned at Amity in September.

Cr Williams said disaster management plans for each suburb and island were available on council's Disaster Dashboard.

She said that while council and emergency agencies had been working hard to prepare the city, it was important everyone took steps now to prepare themselves and their properties.

"I urge everyone to do so also as a mark of respect for those who stand ready to help us when we need them," she said.

"You and your family will feel safer and more confident if you have prepared, rehearsed and planned."

People should be familiar with their best emergency escape route and prepare an emergency kit with vital documents and prescriptions.

Residents should also identify safe places and friends who could help to look after pets and livestock.

How to help protect your home:

  • Keep grass and undergrowth trimmed
  • Rake up and reduce leaf litter and overgrown shrubs
  • Remove branches overhanging buildings and leaf litter from roofs and gutters
  • Store fuels and chemicals away from dwellings
  • Move woodpiles away from buildings
  • Seal gaps, vents and roof spaces to prevent embers from entering a building
  • Display house numbers clearly and provide access for fire trucks