Fire Management Planning Projects - Strategen Environmental
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Fire Management Planning Projects

OUR PROJECTS

Pinky’s Beach Eco Retreat, Rottnest Island

Strategen were appointed by Pinky’s Beach Pty Ltd to prepare a Bushfire Management Plan (BMP) and Bushfire Emergency Evacuation Plan (BEEP) to support development application for the proposed tourist accommodation development at Pinkys Beach on Rottnest Island.

Given the development was primarily tourist accommodation, it was assessed as being a vulnerable land use.

Our role in this project included:

  • creating a Bushfire Management Plan documenting a performance-based bushfire safety strategy that used various Performance Principle Solutions to address non-compliances with the Acceptable Solutions.  The BMP demonstrated compliance with ‘unavoidable development’ (Policy Measure 6.7.2) as a portion of the proposed tourist development is in areas of BAL-40/FZ due to unmanaged vegetation associated with the delicate dune systems
  • Bushfire Emergency Evacuation Plan was prepared to address Policy Measure 6.6 of State Planning Policy 3.7 Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas that identified the emergency procedures and actions to be undertaken in a bushfire emergency, including assignment of the roles and responsibilities.

Margaret River Surf Pro – Surfing WA

Bushfire risk planning and management doesn’t only apply to permanent habitable buildings.

Sometimes councils require a development application to be submitted for temporary buildings and tourist events (e.g. sports events, music festivals etc), which if located in a designated bushfire prone area, require assessment of the bushfire risk to life and property assets and demonstration of compliance with State Planning Policy 3.7 (Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas) and the associated Guidelines for Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas.

One such event is the Margaret River Surf Pro, a world-class tourism event held at several locations in the Margaret River area and which showcases the South West of Western Australia to a global audience.

Strategen was engaged by Surfing WA to prepare a Bushfire Management Plan (BMP) to support development application for this tourism event.

The challenge with events of this nature is that there is no specific regulatory guidance in State Planning Policy 3.7 for temporary structures or events. In the absence of regulatory guidance, the BMP was developed using best practice principles and methodologies from SPP 3.7, the Guidelines and Australian Standard 3959-2009 Construction of buildings in Bushfire Prone Areas. As portions of the event sites were assessed as being in areas with BAL-40 or BAL-FZ ratings, the BMP successfully demonstrated compliance with ‘unavoidable development’.

Various ‘Performance Principle Solutions’ were used to address non-compliances with the prescriptive Acceptable Solutions of the Guidelines, and to demonstrate compliance with the bushfire protection criteria of the Guidelines. Evacuation diagrams for each of the event sites were produced to nominate emergency assembly areas for bushfire scenarios.

Although this year’s event was unfortunately cut short, we at Strategen certainly hope that the 2019 Margaret River Surf Pro is a successful one and that all risks, including bushfire, are successfully managed.

Photo credit: WSL/Sloane

Shire of Esperance Strategic Bushfire Risk Management Plan

Under the State Emergency Management Plan for Fire (Westplan Fire), all local governments with significant bushfire risk are required to develop an integrated bushfire risk management plan to identify and treat bushfire risk across all land tenures.  The aim of this project was to document a coordinated and efficient approach toward identification, assessment and treatment of the priority assets exposed to bushfire risk within the Shire.

Strategen’s role in the project included:

  • Undertaking a critical review of the Shire’s existing bushfire risk management plan
  • Identifying priority human settlement, economic and environmental assets
  • allocation of a risk score and priority against each asset to assist the Shire with prioritising the development of tenure-blind asset specific bushfire treatment strategies in consultation with relevant stakeholders.

Strategen also worked on developing and implementing a risk assessment methodology for priority assets that included:

  • vulnerability of assets
  • ignition risk, including consideration of bushfire frequency and cause of ignition data
  • fuel hazard for major vegetation types surrounding assets
  • predicted fire behaviour based on identification of 95th percentile weather conditions, fuel types and age and topography
  • bushfire response capacity considering location of suppression resources, water supplies and vehicle access
  • the value of assets that would be damaged or lost.

Western Power Communication Radio Sites

Strategen were appointed by Western Power to prepare a Bushfire Risk Management Plan to guide the ongoing bushfire protection and management of the proposed communication infrastructure at multiple locations in the South West and Great Southern regions of Western Australia.

Our role in this project included:

  • identification of potential bushfire scenarios that could affect proposed infrastructure
  • risk assessment of bushfire scenarios based on AS/NZS ISO 31000:2018 Risk Management–Guidelines, including consideration of vegetation types, topography, predominant and worst-case bushfire weather conditions and suppression response capacity
  • identification of mitigation measures, consisting of management of surrounding fuels and infrastructure design and construction measures including materiality and specifications for building penetrations
  • identification of residual bushfire risk following implementation of mitigation measures.
For further project examples or to discuss your fire management planning requirements please contact us.