Be prepared is the message of the NSW Rural Fire Service ahead of what is expected to be a "challenging fire season" .
And the NSW RFS is calling on residents Southern Highlands residents to join with RFS volunteer firefighters to learn more during Get Ready Weekend on September 14-15
The weekend is a chance for residents to get involved in fun family events including children's activities, firefighting displays, opportunities to get aboard a fire truck, and see some of their specialist equipment.
Importantly they can also get some information and advice on preparing their properties for the bush fire season.
NSW RFS Superintendent Martin Surrey said all residents in the Southern Highlands needed to be prepared for the bush fire season.
"Already this fire season we have seen a significant number of bush and grass fires across NSW," Superintendent Surrey said.
"With the vast majority of NSW drought affected and a forecast of ongoing warm and dry conditions, there is the potential for a long and protracted fire season."
"NSW RFS members have been busy preparing by undertaking hazard reduction burns, maintaining firefighting equipment and undergoing training.
READ ALSO: BDAS John Copes Watercolour Prize
"Get Ready Weekend is a chance for Southern Highlands residents to do their bit to plan and prepare their family and properties for the fire season."
Superintendent Surrey said 34 events would be held in the Southern Highlands area, including firefighting displays, opportunities to get on board a fire truck, seeing specialist firefighting equipment up close and having your picture taken with a firefighter.
"Volunteer firefighters will be available to talk to about the simple things you can do to reduce your bush fire risk, like having a bush fire survival plan," Superintendent Surrey said.
"Preparing for bush fires is easier than people may think. Have a five-minute conversation and ask yourself - when will you go, what will you take and where will you go?
"Get Ready Weekend on September 14 and 15 is the ideal opportunity to take the simple step of having your five minute fire chat."
Some brigades may hold Get Ready events on other dates, to coincide with local events. A full list of participating brigades is available at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/GetReady