Australia — THE NSW government will tip $100 million into bushfire protection measures, including new communications networks and an aerial response team to deploy aircraft.
Premier Kristina Keneally will today present the injection as a response to Victoria’s Black Saturday tragedy that killed 173 people.
Backburning across the 22 million hectares of NSW considered at risk will be enhanced, with $84 million for strategic hazard reduction.
Spending measures include:
$11.2 million to upgrade Rural Fire Service radio and pager networks.
$4.5 million to establish a “rapid aerial response team”.
$3.4 million to maintain ”neighbourhood safer places” as a last resort for those trapped by fire.
$2.15 million a year for awareness campaigns.
“It is incumbent on us to learn from Victoria’s terrible Black Saturday experience, which is why we’re boosting vital services across the state with this $106.9 million bushfire package,” Ms Keneally said.
The first $11.7 million will be rolled out in 2011-12.
Almost $10 million of $84 million for backburning will be spent recruiting 80 workers to the RFS.