Important information about fire preparedness in the Northern Grampians Shire.

Municipal Fire Management Plan

The Northern Grampians Shire Municipal Fire Management Planning Committee has prepared a Municipal Fire Management Plan (MFMP) pursuant to section 55A of the Country Fire Authority Act 1958. The MFMP contains plans and input from council, the Country Fire Authority, the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning, Parks Victoria, Victoria Police, and other key stakeholders. The MFMP is a sub-plan of the Municipal Emergency Management Plan (MEMP).

The current NGS MFMP is accessible by selecting the link below.

Municipal-Fire-Management-Plan-2019-22-V3.2.pdf(PDF, 5MB)

Please note that the Fire Danger Period in the Northern Grampians Shire ended on 6 April 2021. The dates for the Fire Danger Period are set each year by the CFA.

Prepare your property

Reduce the fuel load on your property by:

  • Mowing or slashing grass and weeds to less than 10cm high
  • Raking up leaves and bark in the immediate area around buildings
  • Pruning low branches from around buildings and fences
  • Removing rubbish and garden waste

You may be able to burn off in some areas but be sure to check permit requirements first (see section below).

The CFA website has more information on how to maintain your property. You can also assess your fire risk with the CFA's interactive tool.

Permits to burn

Step 1.Rural Zones

Outside the declared Fire Danger Period, persons in a Rural zone do not require a permit.

During the declared Fire Danger Period, persons in a Rural zone may apply for a Schedule 13 Permit to burn fine fuel (such as grass, stubble, weeds), and only where there is an essential need to burn during the Fire Danger Period. For example: farming - broad acre cropping. In the Northern Grampians Shire, the CFA issue Schedule 13 Permits online via the Fire Permits Victoria website. 

Step 2.Other Zones

Open Air Permits to Burn (under council’s General Local Law 2012) are required to burn materials on land zoned as Residential, Commercial, or Industrial outside the declared Fire Danger Period. A fee exemption period for burning permits has been declared from the 2nd to the 18th of October 2021, providing the burning activity takes place during the declared period.

As per CFA recommendations, please ensure fires are attended at all times, consist only of fine fuels, and are fully extinguished at completion of clean up.

More information on this application process can be found on council's Community Safety page. Burning in these zones is not permitted during the Fire Danger Period.

To see your property zoning, visit the Northern Grampians Shire Community Map.

More information on fire restrictions can be found on the Country Fire Authority's website

Fire hazard inspections

Our Fire Prevention Officers inspect properties across the Northern Grampians Shire during the Fire Danger Period.

Fire Prevention Notices will be issued to property owners who have not taken appropriate measures to reduce the risk of fire on their property. To find out more about Fire Prevention Notices, read our Fire-Prevention-Notice-FAQs(PDF, 183KB) .

If you do not comply with the notice, you will face penalties including:

  • All contractor costs, plus
  • Administration fee of $194 plus
  • An infringement penalty of $1,652

Find out more about our fire hazard inspection process below. 

Bushfire Preparedness Travel Permits

The Victorian Government has announced a permit system that will assist Victorians in metropolitan Melbourne and regions subjected to travel restrictions to travel to their properties in Northern Grampians Shire to undertake essential summer bushfire preparedness work.

Permit applications are open and need to be submitted using the following form. Click here to apply.

Permit holders may only travel to our shire once their permit has been approved. Applications may take up to 36 hours to be approved. Northern Grampians Shire Council encourages property owners who are under travel restrictions to consider engaging a local contractor to undertake the works wherever possible. If using a local contractor, you do not need to lodge a permit application.

We may issue a Fire Prevention Notice where it is deemed necessary to place an obligation on property owners to prepare their property for the summer bushfire season. Residents issued with a Fire Prevention Notice are legally bound to comply and can travel to their property to clean it up.


Fire hazard inspections process

If you received a Fire Prevention Notice last year, we will send you an Advisory Letter. 

The letter is just a reminder that all residents have a legal responsibility to maintain their properties and reduce the threat and spread of bush and grass fires. 

The letter is sent out as a courtesy so you have time to prepare your property ahead of inspections by our Fire Prevention Officers.

Our Fire Prevention Officers will be in your area to conduct fire hazard inspections. This is to make sure your neighbourhood is prepared and safe for the fire season.

If we see a property with a fire hazard, we’ll issue a Fire Prevention Notice, which requires the owner to remove the hazard in 21 days (from the date of the notice) or face further action and an infringement.

Our officers will conduct a second and final inspection after the due date on your Fire Prevention Notice. The inspection is conducted to check that the hazard has been removed.

If the hazard has been removed, the officer will finish their inspection and this will be the end of the matter.

If the hazard has not been removed, council will engage a contractor to remove the hazard at the cost of the property owner. This is called compulsory clearance.

Costs associated at this stage

If the property passes the second inspection, no fees will be incurred.

If the property fails the second inspection, the matter progresses to the next stage and fees will be incurred.

An authorised contractor will remove the fire hazard within seven days of the final inspection. However, if the contractor arrives and the hazard has been removed, you will only be charged for the contractor's time to attend the site and an administration fee, rather than the full contractor fee for works.

Costs associated at this stage

  • Contractor's costs, plus

  • $194 administration fee

Council will issue a Fire Hazard Infringement to property owners who fail to comply with Fire Prevention Notices. These are issued under Section 41D of the Country Fire Authority Act 1958. Failure to pay the penalty can result in further litigation.

Costs associated at this stage

  • $1652 infringement penalty