Redesigned national fire danger rating system put to the test

Testing of Australia’s redesigned fire danger forecasting system has begun in north Queensland, Western Australia, and the Northern Territory.

The operational trial of the Australian Fire Danger Rating System (AFDRS) program began on 1 July and will be extended to southern Australia in October when the fire season begins.

In the most southerly areas, the trial may extend into early 2022 before concluding.

The operational trial will test:  

  • the functioning of the software in the field;
  • the ability of fire professionals to use the system to undertake their work; and
  • the ability of the system to support good decision-making.

This will allow the AFDRS to be further developed and refined ahead of the scheduled rollout in 2022.

Development and implementation of the Australian Fire Danger Rating System was a recommendation of last year’s Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements.

The National Emergency Management Ministers’ Meeting, of which the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) is a member, reports to the National Federation Reform Council on progress towards implementation of the inquiry’s recommendations.

The Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council website has more information about the AFDRS.