PERSISTENT hot and dry weather could narrow the window for hazard reduction burns in the region, local firefighters say.
NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) Superintendent Tim Butcher has been told by locals “it’s been one of the longest dry spells they could remember”.
Despite the conditions, Superintendent Butcher opted not to extend the zone’s bushfire danger period, unlike the neighbouring Tamworth area, because there was reduced fuel load on farm and grasslands.
It was a busy summer for the volunteers offering help around the North West and Upper Hunter regions.
He said the southern part of the zone, towards Merriwa, was one of the hardest hit by the ongoing dry spell.
“It reduces our window to complete hazard reduction burns,” he said.
“Now is when we start to look at doing those burns to protect assets.”
While the official danger period has drawn to a close, he said it was no time for complacency.
“You should still provide RFS and neighbours with at least 24 hours notice before you burn,” he said.
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