ACT News

Total fire ban declared in the ACT for Friday

A total fire ban has been declared in the ACT on Friday as Canberra can expect severe fire danger as well as hot and windy conditions.

The 24-hour ban will take place from 12am, ACT Emergency Services Agency Commissioner Dominic Lane said.

The Bureau of Meteorology forecast a top of 35 degrees with strong winds potentially gusting to 60km/h.

But Canberrans will receive some heat relief on Saturday with a forecast top of 27 degrees, followed by 27 on Saturday and 25 on Sunday. There is also a slight chance the weekend could see a shower or two.

But with zero chance of rain on Friday and a fire ban in full force, a number of nature reserves and parks will be closed.

Gas barbeques in all reserves including the National Arboretum will be turned off.

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An ACT ESA spokesperson warned people that any fires that started during severe fire danger might be uncontrollable and move quickly, while flames could grow higher than roofs.

"Expect embers to be blown around," the spokesperson said.

"Spot fires may occur up to four kilometres ahead of the main fire. There is a chance people in the path of a fire may be injured or die. Some homes and businesses may be destroyed. Leaving early is the safest option for your survival."

The spokesman said a well prepared and actively defended houses could be safe during a fire.

"The ESA advises you to make sure you know where you will get more information and monitor the situation for any changes," he said.

"You can do this through local ACT media outlets, the ESA website www.esa.act.gov.au, the ESA Twitter and Facebook accounts or by calling Access Canberra on 13 22 81."

The following nature reserves and roads will be closed on Friday as a result of the fire ban:Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve; some roads within Namadgi National Park including Apollo Road, Orroral Road, Old Mill Road, Warks Road, Mount Franklin Road and the Corin Dam Road; Googong Foreshore; Kowen Forest; Lower Molonglo River Corridor; Molonglo Gorge Nature Reserve; Mulligans Flat Woodlands Sanctuary and the Centenary Trail between Goorooyarroo Nature Reserve and Hall.The Boboyan Road and Brindabella Road will be open to through traffic.The Tidbinbilla and Namadgi Visitors Centres will remain open, as will swimming areas at the Cotter and along the Murrumbidgee River such as Kambah Pool, Pine Island Point Hut and Uriarra Crossing.