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Motorists driving around the Clarence Valley will notice new solar powered digital Fire Warning signs. Image: NSW RFS

RFS roll out solar Fire Warning signs

Rodney Stevens


Motorists driving around the Clarence Valley will notice three new solar powered Fire Warning signs have been installed by the Rural Fire Service, with another nine to be put in place this year.

The solar powered signs are automatically updated each day in line with fire danger ratings on the Rural Fire Service RFS website, with the fire danger ratings informed by data from the Bureau of Meteorology.

The digital upgrade of more than 200 Fire Warning signs around NSW means RFS volunteers will no longer need to manually changes the signs daily.

The new solar powered signs use the revised Australian Fire Danger Rating System, which includes the following four categories for fire danger; Moderate (green), High (yellow), Extreme (orange), and Catastrophic (red), and simple actions the community can take at each level.

On days where there is minimal risk, the signs will display “no rating”.

NSW RFS Commissioner, Rob Rogers said recent wet weather had accelerated growth, meaning we could still experience severe bushfires in the coming months.

Commissioner Rogers reminded the community to be aware of the new Fire Danger Rating System.

“The new fire danger rating system introduced last season is the biggest change to fire danger rating science in more than 60 years,” he said.

“The way fire danger ratings are communicated has been improved and simplified, to make it easier for our communities to make decisions to stay safe on days of fire danger risk.”

Due to warm, dry conditions, the official Bushfire Danger Period began 32 NSW local government areas, including the Clarence Valley, on September 1, 2023, and runs until March 31, 2024.

If you are planning to light a fire during the Bushfire Danger Period, you first must contact the Clarence Valley Fire Control Centre on 6644 5135 to obtain a free bushfire permit.

Substantial fines and jail terms of up to 12 months may apply to anyone found to be in breach of the Rural Fires Act 1997 by lighting a fire that gets out of control.

Solar powered Fire Warning sign locations with signs already installed are: Brooms Head Road at Gulmarrad, Iluka Road at Woombah, and Pringles Way at Lawrence.

Locations where solar powered Fire Warning Signs will be installed: Angourie Road at Wooloweyah, Summerland Way at Koolkhan, Armidale Road at Nymboida, Coramba Street at Glenreagh, Lemon Tree Road at Halfway Creek, Sussex Street at Copmanhurst, the Gwydir Highway at Waterview Heights, Wooli Road at Pillar Valley and Armidale Road at Tyringham.