South eastern Australia, including Victoria, is among the most bushfire-prone areas in the world.

Victoria’s high bushfire risk is due to a combination of factors including increasing population density in fire-prone areas.

Major bushfires can lead to loss of life and injury, damage to key state infrastructure such as electricity transmission lines, water supply assets and transport links.

Additionally, fast moving grass fires in metro/rural interface environments, structure fires in urban environments, and mine fires caused by fires in nearby bushland all pose their unique challenges and consequences.

Examples of significant bushfires and related fires include the 2009 Black Saturday fires, 2014 Hazelwood mine fire and more recently the 2019-20 fires which led to major reviews at state level and a Royal Commission at national level: Inquiry into the 2019–20 Victorian Fire Season and Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements respectively.

All links in the table below will open in a new window.
Publish year Assurance activity Summary Organisation
2016 Report of the Victorian Fire Services Review: Drawing a line, building stronger services (External link) A review on the capacity of CFA and MFB to continue to deliver essential services to the community in the face of new challenges around population growth, demographic changes, climate change, urbanisation and globalisation. The review identified three areas for improvement: Workplace culture, governance and interoperability. Independent
2016 Lancefield-Cobaw Fire - Interim Progress Report - February 2016 (External link) A progress report on the implementation of the 22 recommendations from the independent investigation into the Lancefield-Cobaw fire and 10 additional commitments that DELWP made to improve the delivery of the Bushfire Fuel Management Program. Inspector-General for Emergency Management
2016 Lancefield-Cobaw Fire - October 2015 Report of Community Observations and Response to Independent Investigation Auxiliary Report (External link) An independent investigation into the Lancefield planned burn and subsequent bushfire that escaped containment lines, it documents issues raised by community members and outlines treatment options for addressing gaps in performance or sustaining good practice with relevant organisations. Emergency Management Victoria
2016 Beyond Bushfires Final Report 2010–2016 (External link) A report based on an examination of the impacts from the 2009 bushfires on community mental health, wellbeing and social relationships. The study found that although there was progressive recovery over time, evidence suggested delayed impacts on individual mental health extended five years on from the fires. Academia
2016 Audit and Quality Assurance Framework for Bushfire Management (External link) A framework to facilitate the maintenance of standards, continuous improvement and the management of risks for bushfire management activities (prevention, preparedness, fuel management, response and recovery). The framework is structured around risk, governance, continuous improvement, audit, people and capabilities, process, tools and systems and community and stakeholder management. Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning
2016 Review of community recovery following the 2013–14 Victorian bushfires (External link) A system-wide review to identify opportunities to improve strategies for engaging with communities and supporting community recovery following a major emergency. The review found that early consideration of characteristics of different groups within communities is critical to ensuring recovery programs are coordinated and empower community action. Inspector-General for Emergency Management
2016 Review of the initial response to the 2015 Wye River – Jamieson Track fire (External link) A review of learnings from the bushfires that burned for 34 days ignited by lightning strikes in the Barwon Otway area. Government and the EMC, in collaboration with the fire responder agencies, accepted all four recommendations on good practice and fostering continuous improvement. Inspector-General for Emergency Management
2016 Lancefield-Cobaw Fire - Progress Report - June 2016 (External link) The second report on DELWP’s implementation of recommendations and commitments in response to the Lancefield-Cobaw Fire, overall it found that DELWP had acted swiftly to respond to the Investigation findings and rebuild community trust. Inspector-General for Emergency Management
2015 Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry Implementation Monitor – 2015 Annual Report (External link) A consolidated annual report by Hazelwood Coal Mine Fire Implementation Monitor and IGEM on government’s progress with implementation of recommendations and affirmations in the 2014 Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry Report – Implementation and Monitoring Plan. The report found positive progress by the state and ENGIE. Inspector-General for Emergency Management
2015 Review of Performance Targets for Bushfire Fuel Management on Public Land (External link) A review examining the appropriateness of a fixed hectare-based target for planned burning versus a risk reduction target. The review found that a risk reduction target would better encourage shared responsibility for the management of bushfire risk, integrate planning and investment, and provide a more adaptable approach for fuel management. Inspector-General for Emergency Management