Dudley Park residents raise concerns about neglected bush reserve ‘fire hazard’

Bouwer Trail residents Georgina and John Coumans said it’s only a matter of time until the small bush reserve on their street goes up in flames.

According to the couple, long-term residents of the area, the reserve hasn’t been cleared in over a year, with dead wood, weeds, and dry leaves pilling up along the path and becoming a fire hazard. 

They said contractors came every now and again to blow the leaves and branches off the path but leave most of the wood behind. 

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“It’s an eye-sore and a firehazard,” Ms Coumans said.

“You can’t have natural bush in the middle of a residential area without having it maintained.”

She said they had spotted people smoking and drinking in the small bush reserve before, leaving butts behind that could set the reserve on fire.

The reserve, which is listed as natural bushland, is also located in close proximity to a retirement village and several residential properties. 

Ms and Mr Couman would like the reserve to be maintained on a regular basis to prevent snakes from nesting in the weeds and dry wood from becoming a fire hazard. 

“All they do is come and blow it off,” Ms Couman said. 

“It’s disgusting, you pay your rates and this is just not right.

“If this was a property they would ask you to put on fire breaks.”

“It just gets worse ever year,” Mr Couman added. 

Fire concerns: The small bush reserve is accessible through Brouwer Trail and Duyfken Way, and it's surrounded by residential properties. Photo: Google Maps.

Fire concerns: The small bush reserve is accessible through Brouwer Trail and Duyfken Way, and it's surrounded by residential properties. Photo: Google Maps.

It is not the first time residents have complained about the lack of fire breaks on public reserves. 

In April this year, Wannanup resident Brad Bedford also raised concerns about dead branches and foliage hanging over the back fence of his property and posing a fire risk to his home. 

“It’s not just dead grass, it’s those dead trees, those trees will go up in flames,” Mr Bedford said in April.