Another summer and still no fire refuge

Another summer and still no fire refuge     

13 October 2011

published by

Australia — VICTORIA’S high-risk areas will go another summer without the shelters ordered by the Bushfires Royal Commission.

Three years after the Black Saturday disaster, the state will have only one fire refuge, a disused mine.

A pilot refuge will need to be built and assessed, and guidelines written, before more are constructed across the state.

There is no date set on when those refuges will be built in Victoria’s 52 designated high-risk areas.

Victoria’s riskiest areas, where leaving early is not practical, will be the highest priority for refuges.

The community fire refuges policy, which was due at the end of July, is now finished, and the search for a pilot site will begin.

Refuges are purpose-built shelters, unlike “neighbourhood safer places”, which may offer some protection from radiant heat during a bushfire.

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