Several major bushfires are affecting large parts of northern NSW and south-west Queensland at the moment. As Australia’s specialist farm insurer, Achmea encourages farmers to stay informed and tune into warnings issued by the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) and Queensland Fire and Emergency Service. With an ‘above normal’ fire potential, bushfires can quickly get out of control and the damage to your farm could be much greater than what you previously anticipated. Prepare your farm for the unexpected with these bushfire risk mitigation strategies.
- Bushfire plans – being prepared for the unexpected is critical. We’re encouraging farmers to make or improve their bushfire survival plans without delay. Know what you’ll do if threatened by fire. Get ready for a bushfire following these four simple steps by the NSW RFS.
- Check in with your neighbours – an unprepared property may also present risks to neighbouring properties. We’re encouraging farmers to check in with their neighbours to see whether they need help preparing their properties, and work together to construct effective fire breaks. If they would like a review of their farm insurance, you may wish to consider passing on the contact details of your local Achmea Risk Specialist.
- Asset protection zones – ensure grass is cut short around the house can help slow a fire and reduce its intensity. Also consider non-flammable pathways and ploughing to produce effective firebreaks around properties. For more information, please refer to this useful Asset Protection Zone Guide developed by the NSW RFS.
- Pumps and fire equipment – ensure your pumps are in working order and all fire equipment is serviced and ready to go. As farmers, we can never have too many fire extinguishers.
- Machinery – keep your farm machinery well maintained. Just one spark is enough to start a fire. On high-risk days, cease operating machinery.
- Detailed property plan – a detailed property plan can assist the fire brigade to plan the management of a fire on your property. Pay particular attention to water sources and their reliability, critical assets including sheds as well as fencing and gates.
Also consider whether you have adequate insurance cover should the unexpected occur. For an on-farm review of your insurance with Achmea farm insurance, contact your local Achmea Risk Specialist today.