Reporting on the Australian bushfires
MEAA commends our trained professional journalists on the vital role they are playing in keeping communities across the country informed of the risks and keeping Australians informed and connected with developments around the country.
We also understand and appreciate the interest of foreign media in this story. We advise any journalists unfamiliar with Australian fire conditions to exercise extreme caution.
It is important to remember that journalists at the fire front have undergone significant training and preparation for their role. They are supported by experienced producers and colleagues to ensure that they do not put themselves and others in danger.
The situation on the ground is dangerous and unpredictable. Sudden changes in conditions can lead to life-threatening situations.
We strongly advise any journalists considering coverage of the fires to contact the relevant local rural fire service.
• NSW – The NSW Rural Fire Service: (02) 9898 1855.
• VIC – Country Fire Authority: (03) 9262 8444
• QLD – Please refer to this link
• SA – Country Fire Service: (08) 8115 3300
• WA – Bush Fire Service: (08) 9395 9543
• TAS – Tasmania Fire Service: (03) 6173 2740
Across Australia bushfires are threatening human life, property and precious ecosystems. The impacts on communities are devastating. As the impacts of anthropogenic climate change increase, scientists predict an increase in the intensity of fires and the lengthening of the bushfire season.
Put your own safety and the safety of others ahead of any other considerations.
It’s important to make sure you look after yourself – please refer to these helpful resources specific to trauma for journalists covering bushfires.
MEAA supports our members vital role in reporting this major natural and human disaster. We remind all journalists of the MEAA Code of Ethics, in particular the requirement to respect privacy.
Authorised by Neill Jones, director – MEAA Media.