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Fitzsimmons to front bushfires inquiry

Former NSW Rural Fire Service commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons will again front a royal commission into the summer bushfire disaster.

Mr Fitzsimmons told the natural disasters royal commission last month that the 2019-20 bushfire season was unprecedented in terms of weather, fire behaviour and the widespread damage, destruction and tragedy.

“We saw an area burnt across NSW like we haven’t seen before, particularly across the forested areas,” Mr Fitzsimmons said.

The inquiry is this week focusing on decision making and resource sharing among authorities.

On Tuesday, Victoria’s Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp told the hearing the “watch and act’ warning system “creates some confusion” among the public.

“Personally I would be very comfortable going to ‘enact now’ or ‘take action’, something that’s a lot clearer,” he said.

Mr Crisp said he wanted to see a national standardised system in place as soon as possible.

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