Fire management in the NT

Bushfires are a part of the Northern Territory (NT) landscape. Fire may threaten people and property with little notice.

The northern fire season runs from April to November. The central Australian fire season runs from October to March.

Two organisations are responsible for fire management in the NT, depending on whether you live in an urban or rural area.

They can give you information to help make decisions but ultimately it is a landholder’s responsibility to manage fire on their property.

In urban areas

In urban areas, fire management is the responsibility of the NT Fire and Rescue Service.

Read about the work done by the NT Fire and Rescue Service.

Go to the Police, Fire and Emergency Services website for more information.

You can also find out how to volunteer with the NT Fire and Rescue service.

In rural areas

Bushfires NT supports Territory landholders in fire mitigation and management in rural areas.

Read about the role of Bushfires NT. You can also find out how to volunteer with Bushfires NT.

Controlled burns

Planned fuel reduction burning is conducted by the NT Fire and Rescue Service or Bushfires NT early in the fire season. These controlled fires create zones which slow the spread and impact of dangerous late-season fires.

When you can light a fire

You must have a permit at all times of year for fires in a fire protection zone or emergency response area. Read about permits and lighting fires.


It is an offence in the NT to set a fire in a way that may cause damage to another person or their property.

The maximum penalty is 500 penalty units or imprisonment for five years.

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