South West Complex Fire March 2018
When will the fire be extinguished?
The fires that have burnt more than 15,000 hectares of land across Corangamite and neighbouring shires are contained, but peat continues to smoulder in the Cobrico area causing smoke and health issues for residents. Losses include 24 houses and 63 sheds, hundreds of livestock, pasture and silage. There is currently no threat to communities, but you should continue to stay informed and monitor conditions.
Peat fires smoulder for a long time and can be difficult to put out. Smoke contains fine particles, water vapour and gases including carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides. Some peat fires may produce sulfur compounds which can be odorous.
The EPA and DHHS have developed a guide to the possible health impacts of peat smoke from this event and the actions that residents need to take based on their proximity to the smoke which can be found on the VicEmergency website.
Community members around the active peat fires near Cobrico need to be aware of the risks of peat smoke and understand what it means for them. The two key risks are carbon monoxide, generally contained to within 1km of the peat smoke plume, and particulate matter (particles), which can travel long distances from the peat smoke plume.
How can I find out what is happening with the fire?
The fires are contained but it is important to keep up to date with the latest warnings and advice in case the situation changes.
For the latest warnings and advice on these fires, general fire safety advice or recovery information, go to the VicEmergency website, download the app, or call the VicEmergency Hotline on freecall 1800 226 226. Callers who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech/communication impairment can call VicEmergency via the National relay Service on 1800 555 677.
You can also follow VicEmergency on Facebook and Twitter or listen to ABC Local Radio.
Please like the Corangamite Shire Facebook page for fire recovery update.
You can download our Fire FAQ booklet which has lots of information. Click on the following links or the links below for more helpful Links and Fact Sheets, Fire Recovery updates and VicEmergency Newsletters.