Local Council EM Summer Preparedness

Helen Napier, Municipal Emergency Management Coordinator – Manningham City Council

Justin Murray, Executive Officer Emergency Management – Nillumbik Shire Council

Began by stating what is available for residents during this fire season?

Manningham City Council

Free Green Waste disposal is available for Manningham residents living in the Bushfire Prone Area via a voucher system on the following Sundays: 15 Nov,  22 Nov, 29 Nov and 6 Dec. More information at:


To get vouchers call 9840 9333 and ask for local laws

In partnership with the CFA, vouchers to Community Fireguard Group to remove extra fuel load. Additional Green Waste Vouchers available

Up to 4 vouchers per resident, with size limitations applying per voucher.

Nillumbik Shire Council

Free garden/green waste drop off days for Nillumbik residents – Sun 29 Nov 2015 & Sun 7 Feb 2016


Manningham City Council and Nillumbik Shire Council, in association with VicPolice, have initiated an Arson Patrol Program which encourages people to call 000 if they see suspicious activity or carelessness, ie grinding, burnoffs

Parks Maintenance & Roadside Clearance – on track and schedule

Fire Hazard Inspection Program – properties posing a fuel hazard will be issued a works notice

If the notices are not complied with, council will engage contractors to undertake the work.

Fire danger period not yet declared in MCC – 30 Nov perhaps later, already restrictions in NSC earlier last week. Residents are now required to have a permit to burn off.

Reiterated – call 000, not council, not fire station

Minimal non-compliance on works notices

Burning off – facts sheets on council website regarding removal of vegetation




Emergency Management Victoria – Changing model for Community Resilience

Craig Lapsley, Emergency Management Commissioner, Victoria


Warrandyte is a solid community, a pleasure to be here

PORA success of event attributed to BRW program

Congrats to both Shire – Mayor in attendance – well done!

Driven by those like Dick – key leader program/great brigades/great communities

Personal interest in access & egress of Warrandyte bridge and road network

Community resilience is a journey

Future is interesting – many areas experiencing high population growth, rural decline, more people will live in urban fringe areas, particularly eastern seaboard, growth in metropolitan areas, grasslands

Climate change – frequent, intense, increasing emergencies, flashflooding, globalisation, tourism, tourists welcome but want them to be safe

Many pressures and challenges to be addressed in the future

What is a community? People, lovely environment, business structure, community, services

How to connect, engage with communities?

Use the existing networks – Rotary, Lions, Arts, Business groups, Sports, Mens Sheds, example community group WCA

Lifelines – health and wellbeing, liveability – where’s the basic things? Health/physical mental support, water sewerage, power services

Get better at wellbeing after a fire, so residents stay and return

Kinglake example – many didn’t return

Sustainability, viable – EMV to take on the challenges in the future

EMV consider resilience

100 Resilient Cities – 32 municipalities involved – growth is a big issue, engaging the youth, volunteering www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/AboutMelbourne/Resilient_Cities/Pages/ResilientCities.aspx

Longford ’97 – no gas

Shock will pressurise communities, use leaders in the community where they are still alive and capable – kinglake

School principals and teachers are critical

Use trusted networks, not all networks!

Brings commonality, leveller

Future = safer and more resilient communities

Change from emphasis on protection to resilience

All services working as one – CFA, MFB, EMV, SES, Parks with agencies – council, govt, Melbourne Water, services

’09 was the catalyst for change

Every bit of Victoria to protect

People – Red Cross, Council of Churches – all about people, we need leaders at every level – leadership, accountability, integration

Consequence management of emergency services – impacts and consequences – displaced, dislocated, economic, social significance

Cherry example

Not just about putting out fires anymore, things have changed in Victoria

The emergency management sector – needs you to do your bit, be accountable, use your networks

Dry Australia this season is forecast

Aim is not to scare, but to take the issue seriously

There are no guarantees; unexpected things will happen ie power lines, arsonists

Fires – take control of you

Gender – males have no control leaving feelings of powerlessness in the aftermath

Bushfires are traumatic for children and will leave scars for life, particularly later in life as the impacts are usually delayed in the youth.

The Be Ready Warrandyte video challenged the policy direction of CFA



Vic Roads – Planning to date for Emergency Traffic Management

Andrew Sharp, Team Leader, Traffic & Planning Metro North West Region.


Modelling has been supported by Craig and the EMV

Presented four different scenarios as shown on slides.

Assumptions were made as shown on slides.

2500 vehicles getting across the Wdyte bridge in an emergency would take at least 3 hours and this is a conservative estimate

Issues with a second bridge at Bradleys Lane include:

  • Improvements need to be made on roads at either side
  • Long span requires a pier
  • Trees lost, maintenance issues – always a contentious issue in Wdyte
  • How to stop cars from using at other times
  • Still will remain the issues of capacity further downstream with the single lane either way

These models and estimated times will be presented to government to coincide with 2016 May budget. Modelling is the basis of evidence; facts and figures are needed to present a case before government to receive funding. Aim is to have work completed on chosen solution by 2017/18 fire season.

VicRoads will continue to keep the Warrandyte community updated throughout the process.

Webcams – for the purpose of assisting with traffic management and travel planning

Webcams will provide a direct feed visual display of traffic congestion for vehicles heading towards the Warrandyte Bridge across the Yarra.

Currently investigating solar power for webcams

Webcams expected to be switched on in February 2016


Vic Police –  Management Plan

Wayne Spence, Senior Sergeant, Diamond Creek

No change on bridge and road problems for a couple of years still.

Bridge is a focal point but only an issue if you’re home!

VicPol encourage you to leave, make your plans now.

Their job is to keep roads open for CFA, manage traffic, keep people of out the environment

They won’t let people back into an area if you’re already out so think about your children returning home from school and what they might do. Address this before the fire season.

Animals and livestock are always an issue, particularly horses. Make arrangements to move them days in advance of an event coming.

VicPolice have a zero tolerance for human activity fires. In Diamond Creek area last year, there were 60 fires. 28 people were charged, most of these property owners. Although fires may be unintentional, people will still be prosecuted.

Arsonists – Arson Prevention Package – communities are the eyes and the ears, call 000! Not your local police office, not the CFA brigade, but the 000 number.


Questions and comments – the audience was asked to state their name and area they live.

  1. Park Orchards – what are the upper temperature and wind limitations for burning off?

Permits show guidelines for the conditions, set by the CFA Act and enforced by council

If breached, local laws people will prosecute

Greg Kennedy – if in doubt, ring 000 – don’t hesitate

  1. It would be great to have access to a website with burning off information.
  2. Kangaroo Ground Pigeon Bank Lane – our neighbours are all committed to leave. Option 1 is not serious, should be two serious bridges, VicRoads wasting time on early scenarios

Craig Lapsley – road problem is a funding issue for the government and Warrandyte is not a No.1 priority. We are working hard to make it a priority, but for this we need justification and evidence to elevate its priority. The next step is community feedback. Please have your say.

The scenarios were used for modelling purposes so we can use to present a case for funding. A new bridge without any road networking will cost $30-40 million.

  1. Bradleys Lane Nth Warrandyte – Traffic on south side needs to be addressed also, the entire road network.

Andrew Sharp gave figures – 1000 vehicles per hour per lane and cuts down to 500 at an intersection

  1. Nth Warrandyte – has the northern arterial option been considered? Medium to long term planning by VicRoads and in discussion with council.
  2. Nth Warrandyte – Not local traffic anymore from 4:30-8:00am, more trucks, early morning tradies are increasing.

Wayne – this will be looked at in a larger traffic plan.

  1. Park Orchards – used the Phillip Island example of opening extra lane in emergency situations, an inexpensive method but requires work on the shoulders on the existing roads
  2. Tresize St Warrandyte – what about a link from Reynolds Road to Blackburn Road – is this feasible?

VicRoads have taken this onboard.

  1. Nth Warrandyte – Scanners, sirens – when did they go from analogue to digital?

Scanners have changed frequencies

Sirens are controlled from central location, not operated by stations anymore and rely on the power supply so are not reliable as a warning. Other resources are more accurate and other warning devices have now taken over the sirens.

  1. Nth Warrandyte – Why are we thinking about bridges, what about a Qld based ford? This will provide access to roads ie The Boulevard

Andrew Sharp – water flow in areas do not encourage the building of fords, Osbourne Road not suitable, the grade/facing of the hill is not suitable.

  1. Wattle Blossom Road Warrandyte – requires an integrated approach, the problem is the roundabout, need to take off the through traffic, can be bypassed to Sth Warrandyte through Reynolds Road

Andrew Sharp – VicRoads long term planning

  1. Park Orchards Ratepayers Association – What is the scenario with breakdown, breakages and accidents, overheating, melting roads, etc?

Andrew Sharp – figure given earlier of 1000 vehicles per hour are in perfect conditions which are unlike to occur. Have a plan.

David McNiff acknowledged Dick Davies and the WCA for their work.