Building in bushfire prone areas

This page contains information about building for bushfire risk and protection including:

Bushfire Prone Areas

Specific bushfire construction standards apply in designated bushfire prone areas in Victoria. These bushfire construction requirements are aimed at improving bushfire protection for residential buildings. The creation of the Bushfire Prone Area map fulfills one of the 67 recommendations made by the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission.

The Bushfire Prone Area Map for Victoria was reviewed and updated on 18 October 2016.

  • The 25 councils updated in the 18 October 2016 review are:
    Ballarat, Bass Coast, Baw Baw, Benalla, Brimbank, Campaspe, Cardinia, Casey, Colac Otway, East Gippsland, Greater Bendigo, Greater Geelong, Horsham, Hume, Latrobe, Melton, Moorabool, Mornington Peninsula, Southern Grampians, Surf Coast, Warrnambool, Wellington, Whittlesea, Wodonga and Wyndham.

Changes to the Sale of Land Act 1962 now require a Bushfire Prone Area Property Report to be included with the vendor statement. For more information read the news item on the Consumer Affairs Victoria website.

What are Bushfire Prone Areas?

Bushfire Prone Areas are areas that are subject to or likely to be subject to bushfires.

The Minister for Planning has determined that specific areas are designated Bushfire Prone Areas for the purposes of the building control system.

Bushfire Prone Area Report

The Bushfire Prone Area Report is a free property report showing the status of land parcels in Victoria relative to the areas that have been designated as being bushfire prone.

The report includes:

  • property details
  • Bushfire Prone Area status
  • a map showing the extent of the designated bushfire prone areas relative to the property.

Enter a property address to obtain a Bushfire Prone Area Report

Bushfire Prone Area interactive mapSample screen shot of the Bushfire Prone Areas Map service

The location of designated Bushfire Prone Areas in Victoria may be viewed on our free interactive map service.

This service allows you to:

  • navigate to an area of interest by using simple navigation tools
  • enter address or location details to find a specific area of land
  • obtain a Bushfire Prone Area Report
  • produce a custom map or print for later viewing

Go to the interactive Bushfire Prone Area Map service

Minimum construction standard

A minimum construction standard applies to new residential buildings, schools, child care centres, hospitals, aged care facilities and associated buildings in designated Bushfire Prone Areas. Landowners are required to build to a minimum Bushfire Attack Level of 12.5.

A Bushfire Attack Level or BAL is a means of measuring the severity of a building's potential exposure to ember attack, radiant heat and direct flame contact.

There are six Bushfire Attack Levels: BAL-LOW; BAL-12.5; BAL-19; BAL-29; BAl-40 and BAL-FZ (Flame Zone) which form part of the Australian Standard for construction of buildings in bushfire prone areas (AS 3959-2009).

Bushfire Prone Area map review

The Department has committed to working with local councils, emergency services and other key stakeholders to ensure the map is as accurate and up-to-date as possible.

View an historical listing of municipalities, gazette dates and current plan numbers for the Bushfire Prone Areas.

More information

Victorian Building Authority

Further information about building in a Bushfire Prone Area can be found at the Victorian Building Authority

Spatial data

The Bushfire Prone Area spatial data can be downloaded from the Victorian Government Data Directory 

Building legislation

Copies of the Building Act and Building Regulations are available from

Australian Standards

You can purchase a copy of Australian Standard AS 3959-2009 from SAI Global

Victoria's planning and building framework

Victoria has one of the highest levels of bushfire risk in the world. The planning and building systems ensure that new development is more resilient to bushfire and supports communities to be more bushfire ready.

Find out more about bushfire in Victoria and the background to the current requirements

Page last reviewed on 19 October 2016

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