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Unattended campfire cause risk in Hume region

The reported number of unattended and not properly extinguished campfires in Hume region have increased the past two years despite Covid. This behaviour continues to put country Victoria at greater risk of bushfires.

State Liberal Member for Eildon Cindy McLeish said the number of unattended campfires may be a sign of dangers to come, especially for those with license river frontages recently opened to campers.

Ms McLeish said, “Now that the State Labor Government has opened many spots along the Goulburn River and Ovens River to people camping on licenced river frontages, there is an even greater risk of campfires being left burning or unattended.”

In the Hume region, home to the Goulburn, Broken, Ovens, King and Kiewa Rivers, a staggering 414 unattended campfires were reported in 2020-21. During 2021-22, 264 were reported. In comparison, 162 unattended campfires were reported in 2019-20.

The Hume region has reported the highest number of cases in 2021-22 compared to Gippsland where 188 were reported, Grampians reported 28, Loddon Mallee reported 64, Port Phillip only 10 and Barwon Southwest reported 42.

Ms McLeish continues, “Camping has become far more popular since COVID-19 put a halt to overseas and interstate travel. Its popularity is likely to continue.”

“It is great to see people out and about in nature and enjoying Victoria’s natural beauty. But there needs to be responsibility around campfires and knowing the dangers,” Ms McLeish concludes.


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