Bush Fires

Causes of Bushfires

How do Bushfires occur?

There are many different factors that may start a bushfire. Some of these factors include dry weather, high temperature, weather patterns and flammable vegetation.The causes of bushfires can be put into two groups: Natural causes and human causes.

Natural Causes:

Lightning Strikes:

Lightning Strikes are one of the most commong ways a bushfire is started. According to statistics, 26% of all bushfires on public land are started by lightning strikes. A single lightning stroke can reach a temperature of 30500 degrees celsius. This is five times hotter than the sun's surface! If lightning manages to strike vegetation, this heat energy can start a bush fire.

Human Causes:

Camp Fires:

Camp fires develop into bushfires if they are left unattended or not properly extinguished. According to statistics, 10% of all bushfires are started by bushfires.

Agricultural Burns:

Farmers burn vegetation for several reasons. Some of the reasons include weed control and the removal of rubbish. These fires can accidentally turn into a bushfire when they are unattended. Statistics say that agricultural burns are responsible for 15% of all bush fires.


Any machinery that generates heat or sparks such as chain saws, slashers and grinders can create bushfires. On average, fires made from machinery burn off 2500 ha of land every year.


This category includes all fires are deliberately lit and then develops into a bushfire. This includes children playing with matches or farmers lighting fires without permission.

Unfortunately though, not all bushfires are accidental. Some fires are lit to destroy or damage property.


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