SHIRE of Mundaring has been recognised for its innovative approach to resolving road access issues in bushfire prone areas.
The shire was awarded the innovative management initiative award at the local government professionals annual honour awards ceremony last week.
The shire won the award for its bushfire area access strategy (BAAS), a platform to reduce entrapment risks in bushfire-prone areas; providing residents with two alternative evacuation routes during emergencies.
Shire President Paige McNeil said the BAAS showed the shire’s commitment to enhance community safety.
“We are very proud to have been acknowledged for this strategy which has reduced access challenges in bushfire-prone areas by 36 per cent,” she said.
The strategy embedded a shared vision from council, across service areas including community safety, infrastructure services, environmental and planning, and governance.
It has streamlined access improvements, reduced entrapment risks, and opened up cost-effective solutions in locations previously considered impossible.”
President McNeil said the BAAS aligned with council’s expectations.
“It enables residents to better understand bushfire risks in the hills and the importance of the safety of their neighbours and the wider community,” she said.
BAAS continues to influence various aspects of shire business, including yearly budget road improvement allocations, advice during fire break inspections, ongoing community safety reviews, negotiations with landowners and developers and access audit processes.
Its transferability and innovative management was recognised by the Department of Planning, Lands, and Heritage who have recently invited the shire to help develop state guidelines and templates based on the shire’s BAAS.