Navigating the world of bushfire planning can be challenging. If you’re considering a development or activity that needs a bushfire hazard assessment, you’ll save yourself a lot of time and energy by engaging with an expert to help you understand what’s needed.

Although bushfire hazard assessments are commonly referred to as bushfire management plans or bushfire risk assessments, they aren’t the same thing. While bushfire management plans (often developed by the local Bushfire Management Committee) sets out the types of work scheduled to deal with the risk of bush fires in an area, a bushfire hazard assessment is used to inform planning and building permit applications.

Interpreting bushfire legislation and policies to know the best way to meet the requirements isn’t easy. That’s why engaging with a bushfire consultant to complete your bushfire hazard assessment can make the process a lot simpler and give you a better chance of getting the approvals you need for your project.

What is a bushfire hazard assessment?
A bushfire hazard assessment details all the bushfire protection measures that will be put in place as part of a development to reduce the risk from bushfire to an acceptable level.

Knowing what an “acceptable” level is can be difficult. Assessors of your development application will consider the measures you intend to put in place against a range of other factors specific to your location, the type of development, and its intended use. They’ll then determine if the measures are adequate.

What does a bushfire consultant do?
Our bushfire consultants at GeoLINK provide a range of services to help Councils, builders, land-owners, architects, planners and developers ensure they meet their bushfire safety obligations.

GeoLINK’s bushfire consultants have extensive knowledge of the finer aspects of what’s required for building in bushfire-prone areas as well as the types of products that may be suitable for your project.

We’ll determine the appropriate level of construction relative to the potential bushfire attack. And we can give options and recommendations for any future development.

Our bushfire team are both recognised and qualified with accreditation under the Fire Protection Association Australia Bushfire Planning and Design (BPAD) Scheme (consisting of Level 2 and 3 practitioners). This allows us to take on more complex assessments that require a performance-based approach to achieve higher bushfire outcomes.

Plus, our services extend to:

  • helping you make informed decisions relative to your bushfire risk
  • finding outcomes to achieve an environmentally sustainable balance for your development
  • providing advice on relevant legislation
  • helping to reduce time and costs with the approval process in bushfire prone areas
  • maximising our existing relationships with approval authorities to achieve positive outcomes.

Helping clients achieve project outcomes
When Tuncurry Lakes Resort were redeveloping the caravan park, they needed a comprehensive bushfire hazard assessment as part of the approval process. The assessment and report GeoLINK provided included:

  • analysis of the vegetation and effective slope to determine the levels of risk
  • recommendations of bushfire protection measures including asset protection zones, bushfire construction levels and landscaping requirements.

Plus, we prepared a Bushfire Evacuation Plan that successfully demonstrated they were able to keep those within the resort safe. Our client met their bushfire obligations and gained approval for their redevelopment as well as surviving the 2019-2020 bushfires that threatened the resort.

GeoLINK bushfire services
Our bushfire consultants assess the bushfire risk elements associated with a property or development. Plus, we give you sound advice when it applies to the planning and design rules for developments in bushfire prone areas.

Because GeoLINK are a multi-disciplinary consultancy we have other services that can provide a complete solution for your project. From environmental engineering and planning to ecology and landscape architecture, there’s a range of benefits we can provide to larger and more complex projects because of our depth of expertise.

  • We can help you assess the suitability and costs associated with developing or subdividing land in a bushfire prone area
  • our engineering, environmental planning and other services can be accessed to help you make an informed decision.

As an industry leader in bushfire hazard assessments, we can help ensure your project meet its bushfire obligations.

Get in touch with our bushfire consultants to help you understand the process and give you guidance on what’s needed for approval.

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