Unattended campfires in bushland along the Murray River remain a major concern for authorities as the region experiences another period of extreme heat and bushfire risk.January 30, 2014 4:29am
On alert: Authorities spoke to more than 1500 campers between Echuca and Tocumwal during the Australia Day weekend about camp fires.
During the Australia Day weekend, more than 1500 campers were spoken to between Echuca and Tocumwal.
About 100 people will soon be receiving infringement notices for a variety of offences under the Forests Act and National Parks Act.
These offences were observed as part of a multi-agency operation involving the Department of Environment and Primary Industries, Parks Victoria and Victoria Police.
‘‘The most concerning infringements continue to be for unattended camp fires,’’ DEPI senior forests investigator Greg Chant said.
‘‘These fines are fairly steep, too, which is reflective of the seriousness of the offence. To leave a camp fire unattended, the on-the-spot fine is $433 and DEPI also has the option of taking the offender to court, depending on the nature of the offence, weather conditions or size of the fire.’’
Mr Chant said about 20 per cent of the campers visited had camp fires and the majority were seen to be doing the right thing.
‘‘However, the message that unattended camp fires pose a major bushfire threat is just not resonating with some and could have serious consequences for them and others in the immediate area,’’ he said.
To be legal, a campfire must:
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