Australia is renowned for summer wildfires and the devastation that impacts huge swathes of the country. The fires in Australia have destroyed natural areas, homes, and wildlife, and for the many who are looking to travel over the warmer months, especially by road, it’s important to keep your health and safety at the forefront of any getaways.
For the best Australia travel advice, look to your local council and government websites, as these will offer the most up to date news and information about the location of the fires and conditions nearby, and will announce travel alerts whenever necessary.
Along with following those news services, if you take a number of simple steps and precautions you should be able to travel safely during the summer.
Download an app with fire updates
The NSW Rural Fire Service and Vic Emergency both have apps available during fire season. Information updates from these apps are usually updated every 10 minutes giving essential advice for those travelling to popular holiday areas. Even for those without the app, the websites feature interactive maps with frequent updates.
Keep your plans flexible
Don’t take risks simply because you have committed to the idea of a beach holiday in a certain spot this year.
Whenever possible, make your plans flexible so that it’s easier to change your route, destination, and travel dates when needed.
One of the best parts of taking a rental car on holiday is that you do have the freedom to be flexible, so make the most of being able to head wherever you like.
Know your route
As well as having maps on your phone, it’s best to also have physical copies as a backup.
This can help to ensure you don’t accidentally take a wrong turn, and if you do encounter smoke or fires, you can see which exit options are available to you and take the best one.
Stock up the car
All road trips should begin with a well-stocked car, and this is even more true when there are wildfires nearby.
Pack plenty of water, bring a woollen blanket for each person – these can be used to stave off radiant heat should you get too close.
Prepare for smoke
Even if you’re far from the fires, smoke can be heavy in the air.
If you reach an area that is quite smoky, slow down, as there may be wildlife or even people on the roads that you won’t see until they are very close. To ensure you can be seen, switch on your headlights and hazard lights.
Be sure to close all your windows and vents to minimise smoke inhalation, and if you can’t see clearly and don’t feel safe driving, either turn around or pull over to the side of the road. If you do pull over, make sure you are parked off the road and have your lights on so you do not become a hazard.
If you get stuck, remember that the police number in Australia is 000, and be prepared to give them the best description of your location as possible. When in doubt, check all Australian travel warnings before setting out, and heed the Australian government travel advice for your region.
Most of all, stay safe, and enjoy your holidays in Australia this summer! [/fusion_text]