The CSIRO has today released a bushfire best practice guide, in order to help Australians better prepare their homes and gardens before bushfire season.
The Bushfire Best Practice Guide, available online, offers a range of advice on building and retrofitting for bushfire protection. The CSIRO has worked in conjunction with The University of Melbourne and the Victorian Country Fire Authority to develop the guide, produced with funding provided by the Australian Government in partnership with the States and Territories under the National Partnership Agreement for National Disaster Resilience.
CSIRO’s Bushfire Adaptation Team Leader, Justin Leonard, says the guide aims to mitigate the risk of bushfires with a number of suggestions for residential and landscape contexts.
“It can be difficult to work out the best ways to build while navigating building and planning regulations that are focused on what the minimum requirements are to be allowed to build,” he says.
“Often bushfire building design and landscaping are considered separately when, in fact, there are so many opportunities to have them complement each other.”
The guide helps homeowners better understand that bushfires are a natural part of the Australian landscape and how bushfires interact with homes and gardens. It also uses principles of design to reduce bushfire risks (including injury and the loss of life) and improve on existing bushfire regulatory controls. The guide also outlines how to build or retrofit a house or garden in order to withstand a bushfire.
Given the work conducted by the Victorian Country Fire Authority, the guide also outlines the potential dangers that Victorians specifically face during bushfire season.
The CSIRO’s Bushfire Best Practice Guide is available at research.csiro.au/bushfire.