Awareness Message – Smoke across Victoria 12:00 noon
Awareness message for the community of metropolitan Melbourne 14/02/2009
The fires around Melbourne are generating a large amount of smoke. Residents in Metropolitan Melbourne are advised that due to extent of bushfires around Victoria in the past week, they may be experiencing increased smoke from both going fires and fire suppression activities being undertaken by DSE and CFA fire crews.
Winds from their the north or north east have carried smoke into Melbourne. The smoke may be more noticeable at night or early molrning when overnight inversions trap the smoke near ground level.
If you are experiencing any symptoms that may be due to smoke exposure, the Department of Human Services advises people to seek medical advice or call Nurse on Call on 1300 60 60 24. For general information about how bushfire smoke potentially affects health and precautions to take to reduce exposure, visit www.health.vic.gov.au/bushfire or call the Victorian Bushfire Information Line on 1800 240 667.
Triple zero, the phone number to call in an emergency, is currently experiencing heavy demand due to smoke in the area. Victorians are therefore asked to refrain from calling 000 if they are reporting smoke alone. People should only call 000 today if they can see flame and can accurately identify the location of the fire.
Road users are advised to take extra care as road travel may be hazardous due to low visibility from smoke.
For information on fires in Victoria and general fire safety, please contact the Victorian Bushfire Information Line (VBIL) on freecall 1800 240 667. Callers who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech / communication impairment may call textphone/ telewriter (TTY) on 1800 122 969. Information is also available at www.dse.vic.gov.au/fires or https://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/