Fire Prevention

The District Council of Robe is committed to supporting residents to be Bushfire Ready. Fuel reduction is one of the most important preparations you can undertake. In the coming weeks we will see the curing of understorey grasses, scrubland and forestry areas. Good fuel reduction requires the removal of dead branches, undergrowth, the pruning of low tree limbs and the cutting of long grass to under 10 centimetres in length within 20 metres of your home. The following are minimum recommendations for fuel hazard reduction, required to be completed prior to the curing of grasses:-

* For allotments less than one acre

Reduce fuel loads, hazard mitigation and asset protection zone.

* For allotments greater than one acre

Reduce fuel loads, hazard mitigation, fire breaks and asset protection zone.

These standards should be maintained throughout the Fire Danger Season.

The Native Vegetation Act 1991 provides some exemptions along property boundaries and around dwellings and you should seek advice to avoid any excess removal of native vegetation.

Council undertakes regular assessment of properties, this will commence late October early November 2020 (season depended). Should it be noted that fuel hazard reductions work have not been addressed on your property, notice is hereby given that Council's Fire Prevention Officer/s may enter a property and issue an order against you as the owner and if necessary undertake the required maintenance at your expense and an expiation notice may be issued for non-compliance.

If you have any questions regarding bushfire prevention please contact Council's Community Safety Team on 8768 2003.

For further information on fire prevention and the fire danger season, please visit:

The  most up-to-date dates regarding the fire danger season for 2020/2021 can be found here

The 2020/2021 Fire Danger Season season is : 1 December 2020 to 30 April 2021.

The Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016 (the Policy) came into effect on 23 July 2016.

The Policy was created by the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) following a consultation period in late 2015 and early 2016 to consolidate a number of existing policies and guidelines with the intent of better protecting and improving the health of South Australians and our environment through improved air quality. The Policy regulates air emissions including those from wood heaters and burning in the open.

Wood Heaters

  • The Policy includes rules regulating the sale and installation of wood heaters to target health impacts associated with smoke from wood heaters.
  • The Policy requires compliance with various Australian Standards for the sale and installation of all wood heaters, ensuring that wood heaters are engineered to operate efficiently, decreasing emissions to the atmosphere.
  • The Policy requires firewood retailers do not sell domestic firewood with a moisture content of greater than 25% (dry weight) to protect the community against excessive smoke from burning of inappropriate fuel.
  • There is also a requirement that the owner of a solid fuel heater does not allow excessive smoke to be generated from the heater.

Burning in the Open
A number of changes are now in place in relation to burning in the open following the introduction of the Policy including bushfire hazard reduction, disposal of agricultural and forestry waste and backyard burning in townships.

Notable Changes

  • Under the Policy, property owners within Townships (Robe township) require approval from the Council to undertake burning for bushfire hazard reduction and for disposal of agricultural and forestry waste.
  • Burning in townships that previously occurred Monday to Saturday, 10am to 3pm, is no longer allowed.
  • Inside the Robe township, only charcoal can be used in a brazier, chiminea or fire pit for heating an outdoor area. No other fuels are permitted.


The introduction of the Air Quality Policy results in a number of changes to controls relating to burning in the open. In regards to the Robe township, the burning that was previously permitted without the requirement for any approval, Monday to Saturday, 10am to 3pm, now requires a burning permit from Council.

The District Council of Robe has developed a Township Burning Permit Policy to establish a set of criteria to be considered by Council’s delegated officers when assessing permit applications for burning within the Robe township.

A Burning Permit will be required to carry out one or more of the following burning activities outside of a fire danger season:

  • burning agriculture or forestry waste; or
  • burning off vegetation for fire prevention or control; or
  • burning vegetation for any other purpose.

In assessing Burning Permit applications, Council’s Authorised Officers, will use their discretion, taking into account the following criteria, in determining whether a permit will be issued or not:

*             Bushfire risk of the area

*             Purpose of the proposed burning

*             Amount of material to be burnt

*             Fuel load present on adjoining properties

*             Properties in close proximity or adjoining reserves or national parks

*             Proximity and potential impact to neighbouring residents

*             Availability of other reasonable means to dispose of the vegetation

*             Legitimacy of the proposed burning – i.e. is this genuine fire hazard reduction or rubbish removal

*             Nature of material to be burnt

*             Size of the Allotment

*             Terrain of the allotment and locality

*             Accessibility to the allotment and area where the vegetation is to be burnt

*             Is the material declared and or woody weeds

*             Is the material diseased plant material

*             Requirements of the Country Fire Service Broad Acre Burning Code of Practice

*             Requirements of the Country Fire Service Vegetation Pile Burning Code of Practice

*             Religious or Cultural purposes

The following Application for Permit for Burning in the Open will be required to be completed and sent to the Council office to enable a Council Authorised Officer to assess an application for burning in the open during non fire season periods. The Council Authorised Officer will then determine if a Burning Permit will be issued and any conditions that will apply.