Fire Prevention


FIRE SEASON 15 November to the 15 April each year

(unless otherwise stated)


1 NOVEMBER 2019 - 30 APRIL 2020


For information on what you can and can not do during the Fire Danger Season visit the CFS website link 

Did you know that as an owner of a property you have a duty to prevent the occurrence or spread of fire through land, whether you're a residential or rural block owner with a dwelling or even vacant land. This is part of the South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Act 2005 (Part3 Division 8 and Part 4 Division 7 and 8).

The SA Fire and Emergency Services Act 2005 (Country Fire Service part) states under Section 105F that - 

(1) An owner of private land must take reasonable steps-

     (a) to prevent or inhibit the outbreak of fire on the land; and

     (b) to prevent or inhibit the spread of fire through the land; and

     (c) to protect property on the land from fire; and

     (d) to minimise the threat to human life from a fire on the land.

Maximum penalty: $5,000.

Throughout the year it is always time to look at measures that can be implemented for the protection of life and property through fire prevention measures. Ensure that all flammable material are cleared from around dwellings; rural properties ensuring proper land management principles are adhered to, to stop the spread of fire through their property while adhering to the Native Vegetation Act for fire breaks etc.

Bushfire Protection

In the Garden and around the home:

  • Cut down grass and clear away any fallen branches, leaves and dead undergrowth within 20 metres of the home.
  • Prune lower branches less than 1 metres above the ground to provide a vertical fuel break to help prevent ground fires from spreading into trees.
  • Remove any mulch to at least 1 metre from any dwelling wall and move woodpiles away from the dwellings.
  • Ensure all gutters are kept clear of leaves and twigs.

Rural Living - On rural properties, prepare and maintain fuel breaks around fence lines, buildings, equipment sheds, haystacks, hay sheds and fuel supplies.

Fuel reduction on vacant allotments greater than 0.03 hectares in size. It is considered that a mowed or slahed firebreak be constructed around the perimeter of the block of land to the minimum width of 4m. The flammable growth on the firebreak is to be maintained to maximum height of 10cms for the duration of the fire danger season. However this is only a guideline.

Residential Areas

Council is involved in a township clearance program which starts around October each year, this involves inspection of township and some rural allotments, under the South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Act 2005 section 105F.

Council can issue a Section 105F notice if :

'a Council believes that the conditions on private land in a fire district are as such as to cause an unreasonable risk of the outbreak of fire on the land, or spread of fire through the land, due to the presence of flammable undergrowth or other flammable or combustiblematerials or substances'.

It is the Landowners responsibility to comply with the Act. Failure to comply with a notice can now incur an expiation of $160, plus the recovery cost of council carrying out the work required by that notice.

It is recommended that property owners keep the height of grass on their property to a maximum height of 10 centimetres for the entire fire danger season.

Fire Bans

On days of extreme weather conditions Fire Bans may be declared for the Riverland and other areas in the State. To determine whether a fire ban has been imposed, phone the CFS Hotline on 1300 362 361

Fire Ban Season starts 15th November to 15th April each year unless otherwise stated.

Fire Permits

During the Fire Danger Season almost all fires in the open require permits. Applications for permits can be made at the Berri Office, Wilson Street, Berri during business hours.

Fires not requiring permits, other than on aTotal Fire Ban day include:

  • A campfire for personal warmth or cooking purposes provided the fire is contained in portable cooking appliance or a trench 30cm deep and the fire does not occupy an area exceeding one square metre and there is a four metre clearance of flammable material around and above the fire.
  • Electric welders, mechanical cutting tools, gas equipment (such as oxy equipment) and gas or electric cooking appliances, provided there is a 4 meter clearance around the appliances and equipment.

Total Fire Ban Days

All fires are prohibited on a total fire ban day unless a permit has been issued. However permits will only be issued in special circumstances. Note: Electric welders, mechanical cutting tools and gas appliances require a permit before they can be used in the open on a day of a total fire ban.

The penalty for lighting a fire in the open without a permit on a total fire ban day is $10,000.

Fireworks Permits

No permits will be issued during the Fire Danger Season for the use of shopgoods or fireworks. Permits will be issued to a licenced pyrotechnist for fireworks used in association with community events.

Persons who have obtained a permit and fail to comply with any of the conditions imposed may be refused future permit applications and will be responsible for all CFS and Police costs.

Declared Areas

Persons may operate a gas or electric element for cooking purposes in the open air contrary to terms of a total fire ban in the following areas:

  • Berri River Reserve between pumping station and old ferry landing
  • Martin's Bend camping reserve between upstream boundary of the Berri Water Ski Club and the downstream boundary ofthe lawned reserve
  • Berri Caravan Park
  • Wilabalangaloo
  • Berri Estates Winery, Glossop
  • Glossop Recreation Reserve
  • Monash Recreation Reserve
  • Berri Swimming Pool
  • Berri No 1 Oval
  • Berri Race Course
  • Rodeo grounds
  • Berri Rowing Club grounds
  • Glossop High School
  • Berri, Glossop, Monash, Winkie, Loveday, Cobdogla and Barmera Primary Schools
  • Riverland Christian School
  • St Josephs Convent School
  • Riverland Christian School
  • Our Lady ofthe River Catholic School
  • Adjacent to the Barmera Caravan Park (east) open space gas BBQ
  • Lake Bonney foreshore between Lake Bonney Yacht Club in the west and Nappers Bridge in the north
  • Barmera Caravan Park
  • Cobdogla Caravan Park
  • Greenwood Park Caravan Park
  • St Vincent Playground Barmera
  • Apex Park Barmera
  • Pioneer Park Barmera
  • Barmera Memorial Oval
  • Bruce Oval
  • Cobdogla Oval
  • Loveday Oval
  • Barmera Kindergarten

The operation of gas fire or electric elements in declared areas is subject to the following conditions:

  1. The space immediately around or above the gas fire or electric element must be cleared of all flammable material for a distance of four metres
  2. A person who is able to control the gas fire or electric element must be present at all times while it is lighted or charged
  3. An appropriate agent adequate to extinguish any fire must be at hand.