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The Bush Fire Danger Period Has Already Started, In The Middle Of Winter

We might still be in winter, but the Rural Fire Service has declared August 1 as the start of the Bush Fire Danger Period in parts of NSW.

Twelve local government areas will now have restrictions placed on them as dry weather conditions increase the chance of bushfires.

Armidale Regional, Bega Valley, Eurobodalla, Glen Innes Severn, Inverell, Kempsey, Mid Coast, Nambucca, Port Macquarie Hastings, Tenterfield, Uralla and Walcha are all affected by the restrictions coming into effect on Thursday.

Fires in the NSW Hunter region, Sunday, August 19, 2018. Photo: AAP

It will mean land owners and managers in these LGAs will now have to apply for a Fire Permit at their local Fire Control Centre before lighting any fires, including hazard reduction burns.

Local fire conditions and continuing dry conditions have meant the start date the danger period has been brought forward from October 1 in these parts, NSW RFS Acting Commissioner Rob Rogers said.

"Conditions across the state are drier and warmer than average, with more than 98 percent of NSW drought affected,” he said.

Photo: Getty.

The NSW RFS battled more fires in July and August of last year than in all of summer combined.

“Recent fires on the Mid Coast and in the Hunter region have shown that bush fires can strike at any time and it is vitally important to be prepared,” Rogers said.

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NSW Bushfires
Image: AAP.

The RFS also said now is the time to start preparing for bush fire season.

Cleaning gutters, removing combustibles from gardens and checking that hoses can reach all areas of the property are protective actions people can take.

Updating bush fire survival plans and making sure all family members knows what to do can e the difference between life and death, Rogers said.

“Ask yourself, when you will go, what you will take and where will you go.”