What was once a barely recognisable track is now a fully functioning fire trail thanks to an upgrade by Central Coast Council and the Rural Fire Service (RFS).
The Pleasant Valley Fire Trail in Fountaindale provides safe access for Council and the RFS to manage bush fire risks and emergency situations.
Central Coast Council Director, Assets, Infrastructure and Business, Mike Dowling, said the Council had completed an extensive upgrade to the previously impassable fire trail.
“The Pleasant Valley Fire Trail is in a particularly rugged, steep and dense bushland area in an extreme bushfire zone,” Mr Dowling said.
“Council has undertaken extensive work to regrade and seal parts of the trail with gravel, bitumen and concrete, improve surface drainage and installed passing bays for emergency management vehicles.
“This upgrade will allow the local RFS and Council to better manage the extreme bush fire risk in this area, allow for Hazard Reduction burning to take place and provide safe access for fire fighters should an emergency arise.
Council and the Rural Fire Service have funded the much needed upgrade to the Pleasant Valley Fire Trail to the tune of $450,000.
Central Coast Mayor, Jane Smith, said the upgrade would benefit residents, emergency services and land management crews.
“Fire trails are an essential part of our landscape and vital for firefighters to be able to access and contain fires safely,” Mayor Jane Smith said.
“They are also vital for the management of bush fire risks and the safety of residents and their property.
“Council is committed to working with the RFS and investing in infrastructure to keep our community accessible and safe.”
The 1.2km upgrades included:
- Approx. 290m of two coat bitumen seal
- Approx. 200m of concrete pavement on steep parts of the trail with gradients up to 18 degrees
- Approx. 200m of gravel pavement
- Approx. 510m of regrading natural materials
- Installation of crossbanks for surface drainage
- Installation of passing bays for adequate fire vehicle management.
- Installation of fencing and gates to control access and prevent illegal dumping.
Residents are reminded and encouraged to prepare a bushfire survival plan for their home and family and ensure that their property is ready for the fire season. More information can be found on the NSW Rural Fire Service website.
Pleasant Valley Fire Trail was part-funded through the Bush Fire Risk Management Grants Scheme which was created under the National Partnership Agreement on Natural Disaster Resilience. The Scheme is administered by the NSW Rural Fire Service in collaboration with the Office of Emergency Management.