Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp said heatwave conditions would intensify towards the weekend and Sunday and Monday in particular were looming as days of Severe or Extreme fire danger across large areas of the state.
Mr Crisp said it was vital that travellers to East Gippsland were aware that there are significant fires burning that have the potential to impact communities from the Great Dividing Range to the coast between Bairnsdale and Marlo.
There are three large fires currently burning in East Gippsland that are likely to move and get bigger. When this happens they are expected to spread out of public land and into the community over the next seven days.
“Before you travel you need to check that your planned route and destination are not currently under threat of fire,” Mr Crisp said.
“If you are travelling along the Princes Highway to Cann River, Mallacoota or on your way into New South Wales you need to ensure you remain informed of the current situation as you travel through Gippsland. Let you friends and family know the route you plan on taking and when you are likely to arrive. Stay informed by listening to the radio.”
Mr Crisp said people planning on walking, hiking, biking or four-wheel-driving in remote parks and forests should reconsider their plans and that no-one should be in remote areas in East Gippsland in the coming days.
People who are in far East Gippsland, including Cann River and Mallacoota, should consider what they will do if the Princes Highway is shut and they are isolated for more than a couple of days.
Mr Crisp said heatwave conditions across all of the state in the coming days meant the need to exercise caution and keep informed about local conditions applied everywhere, not just in East Gippsland
Saturday is a day of Very High fire danger in all regions of Victoria, while on Sunday, a Severe fire danger rating is in place for the Mallee, Wimmera, Northern Country and North Central.
Conditions are forecast to worsen on Monday, with an Extreme fire danger rating in the Mallee and Northern Country and a Severe rating in place for all other parts of the state.
New fire starts are likely as a result of lightning which is forecast to be a risk Friday to Monday. Victorians are reminded to connect to multiple sources for emergency information, including the VicEmergency app, www.emergency.vic.gov.au, tuning in to ABC radio or other emergency broadcasters including commercial and community radio stations or Sky TV or by phoning the VicEmergency hotline on 1800 226 226 and following VicEmergency on Facebook and Twitter.