Natural disaster declarations extended following bush fires across NSW

Federal Minister for Emergency Management Mark Dreyfus and NSW Minister for Emergency Services Michael Gallacher have announced a further 20 areas are eligible for disaster assistance following bush fires across NSW.

Joint media release

Attorney-General
Minister for Emergency Management
The Hon Mark Dreyfus QC MP

Leader of the Government in the Legislative Council
NSW Minister for Police and Emergency Services
Minister for the Hunter
The Hon Michael Gallacher MLC

7 February 2013

Federal Minister for Emergency Management Mark Dreyfus and NSW Minister for Emergency Services Michael Gallacher have announced a further 20 areas are eligible for disaster assistance following bush fires across NSW.

The Natural Disaster Declarations recently made in relation to bush fires now come to a total of 71 Local Government Areas. The additional areas now included are:

  • Bathurst
  • Bega Valley
  • Bourke
  • Brewarrina
  • Central Darling
  • Cessnock
  • Cobar
  • Dubbo
  • Eurobodalla
  • Gwydir
  • Lithgow
  • Mid-Western Regional
  • Moree Plains
  • Muswellbrook
  • Narrabri
  • Narromine
  • Oberon
  • Singleton
  • The Unincorporated Area
  • Wellington

“Communities in these areas have been threatened and disrupted by fires that have burnt during periods of persistent and dangerous fire conditions,” Mr Dreyfus said.

“Emergency services and residents in all of these areas have been at a heightened state of alert throughout the danger periods and many have been involved in fire fighting efforts either in their own communities or in neighbouring areas.

“A number of fires in the Far West of NSW have had a significant impact on rural properties, causing millions of dollars in damage to pasture, fencing and other farm infrastructure,” Mr Dreyfus said.

This declaration triggers a number of disaster assistance schemes to assist with the cost of disaster relief and recovery. These disaster assistance schemes are made available by the NSW Government through the NSW Disaster Assistance Arrangements and they are supported by the Commonwealth Government through the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.

Minister Gallacher said the extension of the Natural Disaster Declaration to a further 20 areas is a further reminder of the extraordinary period of bush fire activity NSW experienced this year.

“Whilst the bush fire activity has calmed across the state, firefighters and emergency service personnel remain on alert.

"I would again like to thank the hard working members of our emergency services, who have made exceptional efforts to contain the fires and who are providing help and comfort to those suffering in the clean-up activity," Minister Gallacher said.

For emergency assistance during floods and storms call 132 500, or in a life threatening emergency call triple zero (000). For more information visit www.emergency.nsw.gov.au