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Fire weather warning issued for Cobram Barooga areas

by
February 21, 2017

Authorities are warning people of dangerous fire conditions and weather in the Cobram Barooga district on Wednesday.

Warnings have been issued by fire and weather authorities ahead of predicted severe fire danger weather on Wednesday.

A total fire ban has been declared in both the Northern Country area, which includes the Cobram region, and the Southern Riverina district, which includes Berrigan Shire.

Temperatures are predicted to rise to 36 degrees celcius in Cobram tomorrow.

Bureau of Meterology senior meteorologist Dean Stewart said combined with strong winds and low humidity, it made for dangerous fire weather.

"The bureau has issued fire weather warnings across all of the western and central areas of Victoria as well as the north eastern areas as well," he said. 

"Most of the previous days when we've had hot conditions over the state (this summer), we haven't had as strong a winds or as a low a humidity as tomorrow, so potentially tomorrow could be one of the highest fire dangers that we'll see for the summer so far."

Mr Stewart said while some may think the recent rain would reduce the fire danger, that wasn't the case.

"While last weekend it was quite cool and we got healthy rainfall through parts of the state... in other parts of the state the grasses are still very dry and a combination of hot and windy conditions has led to those elevated fire dangers," he said. 

CFA Chief Officer Steve Warrington said hot, dry and windy conditions would mean fast moving fires were possible.

“The main areas of concern are grasslands, the Mallee region and dry forests north of the divide, the area between Ballarat, Grampians and Geelong,” he said.

“The grass is dry, so under conditions like those forecast tomorrow, fast-moving fires are possible. Although it’s not going to be super hot, strong blustery winds through the day means there’s potential for significant fires.”

On a day of Total Fire Ban, no fires can be lit or be allowed to remain alight in the open air from 12.01am on Wednesday 22 February, until 11.59pm.

However, a cooler change is expected to move across the state in the afternoon from the west, but temperatures would still remain in the 30s along the Murray River region for the rest of the week, Mr Stewart said.

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