Be bushfire ready

Mayor Yvonne Keane
Mayor Yvonne Keane

Bushfire season is too close to home for many Hills Shire residents.

Every year firefighters from all ranks, including the NSW Rural Fire Service, are called out to protect property, livestock and vegetation from damaging blazes.

Most recently, an out of control fire threatened dozens of homes in Londonderry in Sydney’s western suburbs. It took almost 300 firefighters to contain the destructive blaze. This was the second fire emergency for residents in less than a fortnight, with another ferocious fire starting in Cranebrook and spreading to Londonderry and Llandilo on November 3.

Like many Western Sydney residents, much of our beautiful Shire is surrounded by bushland. So, if you live in an area with dense bush, I urge you to have a fire survival plan in place.

Small steps like establishing a safe meeting point for the whole family, clearing your gutters and property of any unnecessary foliage or rubbish and having a plan in place to protect your home can make a real difference when a fire emergency takes place.

Other preventative measures that could save lives include removing flammable material such as paint and outdoor furniture from your home, ensuring you have an adequate hose and a reliable water source, and tidying your garden by mowing the lawn and trimming any overhanging branches.

It is also a smart idea to monitor bush fire alert levels if you live in an area that is prone to fires or surrounded by bushland. The NSW Rural Fire Service website and the ‘Fires Near Me’ app are great ways to get information on bushfire alert levels and fire danger in your area.

On behalf of the community, I would like to extend my gratitude and praise to all the firefighters, volunteers and emergency service workers who work so hard to make this region safe.

I am very proud to belong to a Council who understands the importance of our emergency services in our community.

Once again, a big thank you to all our emergency services and volunteers. Your work within our community is truly appreciated.

I wish the whole community a safe and happy school holidays and hope that you all enjoy your celebrations surrounded by family and friends.