Tasmanians deserve to know if their properties or homes are deemed to be “code red” by the Tasmania Fire Service – which means they are considered indefensible in the face of a major fire.

In response to questioning from the Tasmanian Liberals in Parliament today, the Emergency Services Minister has confirmed the existence of such a category of property that the fire service will not defend in the case of a major fire.

It would appear that is what the former Tasmania Fire Service Chief, John Gledhill, was referring to in weekend media reports that the government has since denied.

This is too important an issue to be dealt with by government semantics about whether or not there is a list of such properties. Regardless of whether a list exists, there is clearly a body of knowledge about this issue.

I don’t accept the Minister’s answer that properties will be deemed code red on a case by case basis as a fire approaches. The Fire Service must surely be better prepared than this.

The bottom line is that if property owners and occupiers are deemed to be in a code red area, they deserve to know about it at the earliest possible opportunity. They might just want to do something about it.

This is not the sort of information that should be kept secret under any circumstances.
Rene Hidding MP Shadow Minister for Police and Emergency Services