Bushfire Prepare Program

Cardinia Shire Council initiated the “Bushfire Prepare”  program after the introduction of the 2020 Metropolitan Bushfire Management Strategy.  This strategy  introduced the concept of Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas (BREAs) within privately owned land.  We saw that there was a lack of readily accessible information and resources available to private landholders to help them contribute to bushfire risk reduction in BREAs. 

Unlike neighbouring shires, Cardinia has a large proportion of privately owned land.  Without a program supporting bushfire risk reduction on private land, a significant residual risk remains.

Safer Together has supported the development and implementation of this project through seed funding and technical support.  The project will provide a valuable resource for all council areas which have privately owned land within the BREAs.

About the project

This project aims to reduce the risk and impact of bushfires through engagement of local private land holders in their own bushfire fuel management.

We hope to provide: 

  • A focus on reduction of bushfire risk through the management of fuel works and other associated activities; 
  • A strengthening of engagement and partnerships between Local Government, community and agencies that focus on fuel management;
  • An increase in community understanding of and community decision making involvement with bushfire risk reduction activities, community resilience and support of community decision making for risk reduction strategies; 
  • An identification of connections or supports links between emergency management and community-based approaches.

Target outcomes:

  • Build upon the Bushfire Fuel Management Guide  to provide information to landholders to better understand their responsibility to manage bushfire fuel on private land. 
  • To give residents the underpinning knowledge to safely and effectively manage the fuel load on their land in a comprehensive manner, integrated into the broader strategic bushfire management planning process. 
  • To ensure landholders understand their local biodiversity and apply appropriate techniques to fuel management to maintain local and regional ecological values. 
  • To provide a flexible and accessible delivery mechanism for key information, through the use of video and online learning methods. 

Program structure

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Bushfire Prepare consists of an e-learning package comprising  seven modules:

  1. Basic fire behaviour
  2. Your bushfire plan
  3. Fire management arrangements
  4. Fuel management options
  5. Managing safety
  6. Equipment operation
  7. Planning and conducting your burn

The first two modules basically mirror the existing CFA Fire Safety Essentials program, adapted for online learning and providing an accessible delivery mechanism.  These modules can be completed by anyone with an interest in bushfire safety and preparing a bushfire plan.

Modules 3 to 7 are mainly aimed at owners of properties with a bushfire risk who want to better understand how to go about reducing their bushfire risk.  While these are aimed at those properties in the Bushfire Risk Engagement Areas the modules will be suitable for any rural areas. 

Following completion of all modules, there will be an option for participants to take part in a practical workshop in which the skills learnt in the theory component will be able to be put into practice.  

To register your interest in a practical workshop session, go to the practical workshop expression of interest form or to register for the online learning go to e-learning registration.

Relationship between existing CFA programs and Bushfire Prepare