NSW Bushfires

The Premier has declared a state of emergency and this has implications for the way our NSW emergency services personnel engage with councils, including use of our precious water supplies.

As we brace for more dangerous bushfire conditions during what is forecast to be a long, hot summer, LGNSW offers thanks to the mayors, councillors, council staff and emergency services personnel who have shown such dedication to their communities during the ongoing emergency.

Detailed information on the status of the fires can be viewed at the Rural Fire Service Website

Visit Live Traffic NSW for information on road closures and other travel information. 

How to protect yourself and others from bushfire smoke (see fact sheet

NSW Planning, Industry and Environment Air Quality Concentration Data (updated hourly)  

 

Assistance for councils

Local, state and federal governments are working together to plan and fund rebuild efforts and the huge task of supporting bush fire affected councils to coordinate and resource clean-up and recovery.

We welcome the appointment of National Recovery Coordinator Andrew Colvin APM OAM who is leading the Federal government’s National Bushfire Recovery Agency – part of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and reporting to Minister for Natural Disaster and Emergency Management David Littleproud.

We also continue to work closely with the Office of Emergency Management and other State agencies.

The Federal government has announced an initial $60 million will be distributed across 42 local government areas, with each council getting an initial $1 million. A further $18 million is to be distributed at the discretion of the new National Bushfire Recovery Agency, to allow for road and bridge repairs, and the reconstruction of local infrastructure including child care centres, sporting facilities, and cycleways. Full details can be found in the Prime Minister's media release.

The NSW government has announced $1 billion (in addition to the $231 million already committed) over the next two years to rebuild bushfire impacted communities. This funding will prioritise the repair, rebuild and improvement to infrastructure, such as roads, rail-lines, bridges, schools, health facilities and communications facilities, which have been damaged or destroyed by bushfires. The government has also waived the waste levy for bushfire waste generated in 32 council areas (view the list of applicable council areas). All other waste disposal costs will apply. Check with the waste facility in advance to determine the exact cost.

 

Recovery efforts

Bushfire-affected councils require a range of resources including logistics and communications, tree management, planning, cleaning, waste services, and engineering and infrastructure support.

LGNSW is a member of the Local Government Bushfire Recovery Support Group. We are collecting and coordinating the offers of support and directing them to the Office of Emergency Management so they can match your offers of supply to the areas where that support is needed, when it is needed. 

How your council can help

It is important that all offers of support and coordinated, and duplication minimised. All non-bushfire affected councils offering assistance should register with the Local Government Bushfire Recovery Support Group by calling 02 9246 7709 or recovery@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au.

 

Other useful links

Community Information

Evacuation and Recovery Centres

Natural Disaster Assistance Schemes

Disaster Assistance for Individuals

Insurance

Psychological Assistance

The Federal Government’s National Bushfire Recovery Agency

Bushfire Housing Assistance Service - Call 1800 018 444 or visit www.facs.nsw.gov.au/about/contact/housing

Nature Conservation Council - Tips for managing land and helping wildlife after a fire

For more information about recovery arrangements it is recommended you visit the Office of Emergency Management Website

 

How you can help

Following a disaster, our spirit of generosity and desire to help those impacted is a wonderful thing. However, we need to be careful that we only donate things that are actually needed by our impacted communities. 

Locals are already doing what they do best and looking after people around them who have been hit by these horrific fires. NSW Government agencies, along with charity partners and local community organisations, are helping to provide emergency shelter, food and water.

The best way to help our impacted communities is to donate money to one of the many charities or appeals that have been established. Money gives people the choice to buy things they need and support local businesses that have also been impacted. 

If you wish to donate to fire affected communities, here are the main groups working on the ground and accepting donations:

NSW Rural Fire Service

The Salvation Army disaster appeal - 137 258

The Australian Red Cross - 1800 733 276

The St Vincent de Paul Society  - 131 812

Lions Clubs are raising money for victims and firefighters on the Mid North Coast. 

Koalas in Carethe Rescue Collective and WIRES  

GoFundme also features a number of local fund raisers for affected families and communities.

Please do not donate physical goods such as toys, furniture and clothes at this time. They are usually not needed and fill up local community spaces while taking volunteers away from other important tasks. If you have unwanted physical goods please consider selling them (perhaps have a garage sale) and donating the proceeds instead.

The NSW Office of Emergency Management has created a social media campaign, launched on 22 December to say thank you for the generosity and explain to people how they can help (rather than donate goods). 

 

NSW Disaster Recovery video