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Report name
Inquiry into the 2019-20 Victorian Fire Season - Phase 1
Lead agency
DELWP - Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning
DEECA - Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action
In Progress
Due date
June 2023
IGEM considers that this action is progressing satisfactorily
Recommendation theme
Recommendation 6: Mechanical treatments
Recommendation details

The Inspector-General for Emergency Management recommends that the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (or the single entity referenced in Recommendation 4) – supported by other organisations with a legislated responsibility for fuel management – plan for and increase the application of non-burning fuel management treatments including mechanical means.


The annual fuel management report should include the non-burn component of fuel management treatment, track annual change, and provide a comparison to the previous three years.


The Victorian Government will increase its investment in the construction and maintenance of public land roads and bridges (for example, upgrading timber structures to fire-resistant materials), management of hazardous trees, vehicles and equipment to ensure that firefighters can safely access the forest for fire prevention, preparedness, fuel management (including planned burning and mechanical treatment), suppression and recovery operations, under conditions of increased fire frequency and intensity. These activities are targeted at improving access to public native forests.

Summary of progress

IGEM’s 2021 progress report noted that four-year initiative and ongoing funding for key bushfire management programs (Reducing Bushfire Risk and Safer Together) through the 2021–22 Victorian State Budget would support continuing activity on the elements of this action.

Public land roads and bridges
Under the Reducing Bushfire Risk program, 10 crossing structures were replaced in 2021–22, with a focus on priority structures on strategic fire access roads. 

A total of 2024 km of road upgrades and improvements were delivered across the strategic fire access road network, including 355 km of verge and roadside vegetation management to support safe access for firefighters and other road users. 

Vehicles and equipment
As noted in the progress summary for FSIP1 Action 6.6, recent Victorian State Budgets provide investment in equipment and asset maintenance and replacement to support preventative bushfire services and the rapid response to emergency events.