Fire risk remains despite wet

By LEE McIVORlmcivor@gladstoneobserver.dyndns.org

THE potential for large fires in the Gladstone region is still a reality despite the recent rains, according to researcher John Thomson from the Tropical Savanna Co-operative Research Centre (TSCRC).

Mr Thomson was warning landowners to remain prepared for bushfires in the coming months.

'There is quite a lot of fuel on properties and whilst the wet season appears to be kicking in, care still needs to be taken by landowners to ensure they have taken adequate precautions,' he said.

Insurance companies have also advised property owners to take precautions to protect their property, suggesting farmers include coverage for business continuation costs into their policies.

Mr Thomson said the TSCRC had developed a new bushfire alert website called www.northfire.org.au to assist the public with the latest satellite information about fires.

'The website covers Queensland from Bundaberg through to the northern extremes of the state,' he said.

'The accuracy of the information on the site is to within one kilometre, while the reliability is 95 per cent.

'The timelag is about an hour depending on the number of satellite passes throughout the day.'

He said the site had a hotspot section which detailed fires as they happened in real time.

'The site also maps fires that have occurred in a region with particular focus on the broader west-of-the-range larger proper-ties,' he explained.



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