The Cemeteries and Crematoria Association of Victoria (CCAV) has advised through a media release that funerals on Code Red days may be postponed this bushfire season.
In guidelines developed with Victoria’s fire agencies, CCAV has recommended that cemeteries situated in high fire risk locations consider postponing funerals on declared Code Red days in the interests of community safety.
The guidelines, which have the support of the funeral directors’ peak body, the Australian Funeral Directors Association, build on advice formulated by CFA for events scheduled on Total Fire Ban days.
CCAV President David Crowe said the decision to postpone a funeral would not be taken lightly. “The judgement to postpone a funeral will be based on the risk to the overall best interests of the community, and the families and groups that are present at funerals. Our members will work in collaboration with the families and the funeral directors to ensure any postponed funeral arrangements are rescheduled as soon as safely possible in accordance with the assessed fire danger and bushfire risk,” he said.
Code Red days signal the worst possible conditions for a bush or grassfire. There have only been two Code Red days in the last three years.
Fire agencies recommend that community members in high-risk bushfire areas leave the night before or early in the morning of a Code Red day.