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Control measure

Consider creating firebreaks

Control measure knowledge

Firebreaks prevent the spread of fire by physically removing the fuel from tactically chosen, limited areas, so that firespread is restricted. For further information refer to National Operational Guidance: Fires and firefighting - Firebreaks.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Consider strategies for creating firebreaks as part of pre-planning activities

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Make a realistic assessment of the time taken to remove the fuel and consider the layout of the site and topography before initiating this tactic, as the direction and speed of firespread will determine where the firebreak should be constructed
  • Factor the type of fuel and weather conditions into a calculation of how wide an effective firebreak needs to be, considering the heat release rate and likelihood of flying embers, as the type of fuel and available personnel or machinery will impact on how long a firebreak will take to construct
  • Consider using fire and rescue service personnel, competent people and specialist machinery (under the direction of the incident commander) to remove fuel, to prevent further fire growth
  • Consider removing waste and plant from site or relocating it to a safe area