Know your risk
Be Firewise and prepare your home, yourself and your family. First you should have an understanding of your risk and the fire weather conditions in your area.
Ask yourself questions like "how close do you live to bushland?" and "what is the slope like?"
Find out more about your potential risk.
The fire danger index is a measure of how difficult a fire will be to fight. The higher the fire danger the more unpredictable the fire danger and the more danger you could be in.
Know your fire danger rating and what it means to you and your property.
Bush fire preparation
Whether you choose to leave early or stay and defend, enacting a bush fire survival plan and having a well prepared property may save your life. The following information may help you prepare for bushfire.
Identifying bush fire hazards
You can get advice on bush fire risks, appropriate property maintenance or report a bush fire hazard to the NSW Rural Fire Service by contacting the Hornsby Fire Control Centre
Your Bushfire Survival Plan
A Bush Fire Survival Plan can help you make important decisions about what to do during a fire including general advice on understanding your risk, steps to prepare your property, and the decision on what to do during a fire. Sit down and talk about it with your family so everyone knows what to do if a fire occurs.
Download a Bush Fire Survival Plan from the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS). The Bush Fire Survival Plan is also available as a mobile app called My Fire Plan. Users can complete their plan including key contacts, and then email, print and share it with family and friends.
Download the MyFirePlan app:
For iPhone and iPad
Our Firewise Kits contain lots of useful information to help you prepare for bushfire.
Maintaining your property (pdf. 995KB)
Preparing for bushfire (pdf. 1009KB)
Pre-Summer Bushfire Checklist (pdf. 16KB)
Emergency Contacts List (pdf. 301KB)
Bush fire information is now available on CD. Contact us if you would like a copy.
The NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) offers more information on preparing and protecting your home and property.
Copy your documents
It's a good idea to make copies of important documents such as birth certificates and drivers' licences, and store them in a secure place away from your home. The most important documents include:
- birth certificates
- marriage certificates
- drivers' licences
- Medicare cards
- bank account details
- insurance details and policy numbers, e.g. home and contents, healthcare, income protection, life insurance
- medical records
10/50 vegetation clearing
The 10/50 vegetation clearing rule and Code of Practice has been developed by the NSW Rural Fire Service to permit landowners in certain areas to undertake vegetation clearing on their own land around residential accommodation and high risk facilities to reduce the risk of bush fire. Within these areas, the new laws override Council’s Tree Preservation Order (subject to compliance with the 10/50 Code of Practice).
Learn more about the 10/50 rule
10/50 review submission template for Ku-ring-gai residents
Make your home more resilient to extreme weather
Windows for insulation and bushfire protection
Have you ever thought that making upgrades to your home to improve your resilience to bushfire can also be beneficial to saving energy?
During a bushfire, most houses are lost due to ember attack rather than direct flame contact. Windows are weak points when impacted by fire. The radiant heat of a fire can crack untempered glass allowing burning embers to enter
What can you do?
- Installing toughened glass can help protect your home while also providing improved insulation which can also significantly reduce your heating and cooling costs.
- Replace any overhead glazing such as skylights with 'grade a' safety glass.
- Remember to consult with Council and a qualified bushfire consultant to meet the necessary construction standards that apply in all bush fire prone areas. All window elements should meet test criteria for withstanding simulated bushfire attack as part of Australian Standard 1530 (part 8.1 and or 8.2).
- Installing fire-rated safety shutters or metal mesh screens suitable for your location may also reduce your risks of ember attack.