Bushfire threat now a year-round situation in Australia, expert warns
By Shelley Lloyd
One of the country's leading bushfire experts warns Australia needs to prepare for the threat of year-round bushfires.
Drought is crippling New South Wales and large parts of Queensland, setting the stage for a bad fire season in Australia with blazes already burning large tracts of land in recent weeks.
Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre CEO Richard Thornton said with the devastating drought expected to continue, Australia was heading into uncharted territory for bushfire threat.
There are currently two fire seasons in Australia, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.
But Dr Thornton said he believed the future would look very different.
"Any day in an environment where it is dry, where you have high winds, warmer temperatures, low humidity, will be a day that a fire can start that could potentially impact on communities," he said.
NSW fire authorities this year brought forward by two months their official bushfire danger period for a wide area of the state.