Bushfires are naturally occurring events in the bushland around Sydney.
In fact, they are essential to the health and long-term sustainability of our remnant bushland areas.
The life-cycles of our native plants and wildlife that inhabit these bushland reserves are well adapted to cope with fire, providing it conforms with particular ecosystem requirements of intensity and length of time between burns.
In the context of North Sydney Council's bushland reserve system, managed (or prescribed) burning is used to meet both ecological objectives of bush regeneration and hazard reduction to adjoining assets - namely residential housing. While the risk of a wildfire damaging property or threatening life is relatively low in North Sydney, North Sydney Council's Bushland Management Team actively undertakes hazard reduction activities including modification of vegetation structure; creation of fire access management zones; manual fuel reduction; pile burning; and broad area burning.
It is important to remember that residents who live in the interface zone immediately adjacent to bushland are responsible for ensuring that their own properties are prepared for the unlikely event of a wildfire.
While the overall amount of bushland and it's predominant vegetative composition minimises the risk of a truly damaging bushfire event occurring in North Sydney, the difficulty of access for emergency service personnel and potentially slower response times caused by traffic and site accessibility are important factors to consider. To ensure your home is prepared, visit the NSW Rural Fire Service website below.
Trees are Protected
Native vegetation, including trees are protected in ALL Council managed bushland reserves. It is an offence for residents/members of the public to interfere in any way with bushland vegetation without the explicit authority of Council.
If you are concerned about bushland vegetation adjoining your home, please contact Council's Bushland Management Coordinator on 9936 8224 for assistance.
Bushfire Hazard Reduction Program
2018/19 Hazard Reduction Burn Program (173KB)
North Sydney Council, in cooperation with the Fire & Rescue NSW, and the Mosman-North Sydney-Willoughby Bushfire Management Committee (BFMC) implements controlled hazard-reduction burns in several bushland reserves.
The burns are approved under the region's Hazard Reduction Program (above), and are carried out jointly by Fire & Rescue NSW and our Bushland Management Team.
Council will endeavour to provide local residents with a minimum of two-days' notice prior to conducting burning operations, however, the need to exploit favourable weather conditions may necessitate a reduced notification period.
Bush Fire Risk Management Plan
Bush Fire Risk Management Plan
Everyone has a role to play in planning for bush fires – fire authorities, landowners, land managers, planning authorities, local councils and the community.
Our area BFMC has undertaken an assessment process to identify assets at risk of bush fire in each Council area, which will include communities, buildings, infrastructure as well as culturally and environmentally significant locations. The BFMC then develops strategies to protect those assets.
Each BFMC develops a Bushfire Risk Management Plan that sets out the types of work scheduled to deal with the risk of bush fires in an area. These works may range from community education to hazard reduction activities such as manual fuel reduction or prescribed burning.
Bushfire Danger Period Public Access Management Plan
Bushfire Danger Period Public Access Management Plan (947KB)
This document is prepared by the BFMC in our area, and provides a structured multi-agency approach to managing public access with the lower North Shore’s National Parks, Bushland Reserves and Open Space Parks during periods where the Bushfire Danger Rating has been identified as Severe (or greater), and a Total Fire Ban has been declared. The plan provides direction for the management of public access in Balls Head Reserve (Waverton); Berry Island; Badangi and Gore Cove Reserves in Wollstonecraft.
If you have concerns about bushfire in your local area, contact North Sydney Council’s Bushland Management Coordinator on 9936 8100.
Bushfire Hazard Complaints may also be lodged with the NSW Rural Fire Service via their website at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au