Burnoffs prove to be hot topic in winter

Police and firefighters were called to a fire outside a business in Wodonga on Saturday. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

Police and firefighters were called to a fire outside a business in Wodonga on Saturday. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

FIREFIGHTERS are wasting significant amounts of time attending illegal burn-offs.

Brigades in Albury and Wodonga respond to about 10 backyard fires each week.

Wodonga CFA station officer David Brown said people were allowed to burn firewood for warmth but needed permits to burn rubbish and green waste.

“We have quite a fair few problems,” he said.

“Every time we get called out, there are volunteers who have to go.

“If people did a bit of basic research they would realise they can’t do it.”

Firefighters responded to a burnoff in Chisholm Court, Wodonga on Saturday.

Mr Brown said while he was not aware of the circumstances of the burnoff, laws were in place to protect against air pollution.

Albury station officer Dave Herbert said resources were being used to put out fires “that the average person can put out with a garden hose in a few minutes”.

“It’s a problem year-round but it’s more prevalent in winter months,” he said.

“We often get called by people complaining about the smoke.

“People aren’t always looking after the environment as far as the smoke is concerned and it’s an ongoing problem.”

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