Sampson Flat community bushfire experiences



Sampson Flat fire. Photo by Angry Planet.
Sampson Flat fire. Photo by Angry Planet.

Hazard Note 15 summaries results from research commissioned by the South Australian Country Fire Service after the January 2015 Sampson Flat bushfire. The research explored three key questions: what factors affected residents’ planning, preparation and actions on the day; the influence of CFS Community Fire Safe groups on bushfire safety; and the effectiveness of information and warnings for people living in the rural/urban interface.

Important new insights from this study include that although the majority of people surveyed felt physically prepared for a bushfire, only half felt emotionally prepared for the impacts of the fire and its aftermath. Just over one quarter of respondents had a written bushfire survival plan (a strong result compared with the average seen in previous studies of five percent) and nearly 90% had had a discussion about what to do in the event of a bushfire. Being part of a Community Fire Safe group had a positive impact on both planning and preparation.

This project showed that the collective learnings from other post-fire studies and the actions being taken by CFS to implement these learnings are being translated into actions in the community. Detailed findings and discussion from this research can be found in the full report.

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