Burn off restrictions eased for October

Published on 28 September 2020


Mornington Peninsula Shire will again ease burn off restrictions on small properties throughout October 2020 to allow residents to burn off for fire prevention purposes.
For the month of October 2020, Open Air Burning is permitted only on Fridays and Saturdays between 9am and 4pm on land between 500 and 1500 square metres, provided that: 

  • your property is within the Mornington Peninsula Shire Bushfire Prone Area
  • for the purposes of fire prevention
  • no more than 1 cubic metre of vegetation is burnt at any one time
  • the fire is not within 10 metres of any neighbouring dwelling
  • the General Fire Safety Provisions are followed at all times. 

The easing of restrictions for land less than 1500 square metres aims to assist owners of smaller properties to reduce fine fuel in the lead up to the fire season.
For many people, burning-off vegetation is an effective way to prepare and maintain properties.
Smoke from burning off activities undertaken incorrectly may impact human health and the environment, and can also cause environmental nuisance, particularly in populated areas.
It can present a health risk to vulnerable groups such as people with asthma, people with pre-existing respiratory or cardiac conditions, the elderly and young children.
As we are all currently in the Coronavirus pandemic, an illness that affects the respiratory system, it is important to consider this before burning off.
Coronavirus has had a significant impact on all of us, please consider the potential impacts of smoke on your neighbours if you must burn off and have no alternative to remove vegetation.
We are encouraging all residents to think twice about whether you need to burn off this year, or whether it is something that can wait. Before burning off, make sure to speak to your neighbours and include them in your decision.
If you do decide to go ahead this year, to ensure you are burning off correctly and safely here is some simple advice to guide you:

  • Before starting a burn off let your neighbours know, and check and follow local regulations or laws set down by CFA or your local council.
  • You should also register your burn off with the Emergency Services
  • Telecommunications Authority ESTA on 1800 668 511 to avoid unnecessary call outs by the local CFA brigades.
  • Check the weather forecast for the day of the burn and a few days afterwards. 
  • General fire safety precautions must always be taken. Make sure there are enough people to monitor, contain and extinguish the burn safely and effectively.
  • Move the pile to a suitable location in a cleared area at least 3m around the burn site.
  • The size of the pile should be no greater than 1 cubic meter, you can gradually add to the pile once its burning correctly. 
  • Ensure the material is cured, dry and there is no toxic material prior to lighting. Burn off material should not be wet or green.
  • By moving the pile, you will ensure there is enough oxygen for the material to burn efficiently.
  • Your burn off must be completely extinguished once completed or if the weather change (i.e. wind direction). Make sure to break the fire apart to thoroughly wet it through. 

All residents undertaking Open Air Burning must also always follow the General Fire Safety Provisions:

  • Giving notice to adjoining landowners/occupiers 24 hours prior to the burn.
  • Calling 1800 668 511 at least two hours prior to the burn to log your fire with the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority.
  • Establishing a fire break of no less than 3 metres cleared of all flammable material.
  • Ensuring the fire is supervised by an adult at all times.
  • Ensuring there is sufficient fire protection equipment available on site at all times.
  • Ensuring the vegetation to be burnt is dead and dry prior to lighting (no green waste).
  • Ensuring at the site of the fire, the wind speed does not exceed 20 kilometres per hour.

Outside of October, Open Air Burning is prohibited on properties smaller than 1500 square metres. 
Open Air Burning regulations for land more than 1500 square metres and more than 40,000 square metres remain the same.  
For more information on the Open Air Burning Local Law for October 2020 visit mornpen.vic.gov.au/openairburning or phone the Environment Protection Unit on 5950 1050.

To see if your property is within a Bushfire Prone Area visit mapshare.vic.gov.au/vicplan.

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