For more information, including our Disaster Assistance Finder, see Bushfire customer care service.

Stay updated

For the latest NSW bushfires information, you can:

Emergency services

To report an unattended fire or emergency, call:

  • Triple Zero (000) 
  • TTY – 106.

Traffic, road closures and public transport

Stay safe and protect your health

Bushfire registration

If you've been impacted by the fires, find and reunite family and friends after the emergency. Register with the Red Cross service Register. Find. Reunite.

Returning home safely

For health advice on returning home safely after a bushfire, such as wearing protective clothing, handling waste and managing food and water supplies, visit NSW Health.

NSW Government experts will check every fire-damaged property for asbestos. Do not enter your property until you have been told it is safe. Watch the video below to learn about the dangers of fire-damaged properties.

Keeping safe from asbestos after a bushfire

The video starts with a title card showing the NSW Government logo that reads, “Keeping safe from asbestos after a bushfire”.

Narrator:“If your house or business had asbestos present and has been damaged by fire, this could become a health risk.”

We see burnt-out trees, and the remains of a fire-damaged building including fibro and metal items including shelving, a trolley, a barrel and corrugated iron.

Narrator: “Asbestos is mainly found in structures built before 1990.”

Close-ups of broken pieces of asbestos on the ground.

Narrator: “It can be in the fibro cement sheeting that is in walls, ceilings, eaves and roofs, as well as insulation.”

Close-ups of burnt out roofing materials as well as metal benches.

Narrator: “Houses, sheds, garages and out houses could all be affected.”

Another shot of burnt out trees and a burnt-out structure that looks like it might have been a shed with benches and toolboxes strewn around alongside broken pieces of asbestos.

Then there is a shot of a large burnt out shed being inspected by Government officials.

Narrator: “New South Wales Government experts will check every fire damaged property for asbestos.”

A shot of a Government official in full Personal Protective Equipment including suit, gloves, mask and helmet, picking up a piece of asbestos with a tool and inspecting it before placing it in a sealed bag to be taken for testing.

Then there is a shot of a burnt tree with a burnt-out structure behind it.

Narrator: “Warning: do not enter your property until you have been told it is safe.”

A shot of Government officials inspecting a property with the owners.

Narrator: “For more information – and to register for clean-up, go to service dot N S W dot gov dot au or call 13 77 88.”

There is a title card with the NSW Government logo that reads, “For more information, and to register for clean-up, go to or call 13 77 88”.

Air quality

The air quality index indicates how clean or polluted the air is in areas across NSW. For air quality readings that are updated hourly, visit the air quality website

Find how to protect yourself from bushfire smoke.

Medications and prescriptions

For advice on how to access medications, prescriptions or Medicare, DVA or Centrelink cards that have been lost or destroyed during the bushfires, visit NSW Health.

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

If you're an NDIS participant:

Find somewhere to stay

Bushfire Housing Assistance Service

The Bushfire Housing Assistance Service provides help with:

  • emergency temporary accommodation
  • a private rental bond and advance rent costs
  • sourcing accommodation options from the private rental and short term housing sector
  • sourcing accommodation options in your local communities or areas where you have family or local networks.

To access this service:

  • visit Find a housing office 
  • enter your postcode, suburb or town in the search bar
  • select your nearest housing office.


Anglicare provides assistance to communities through emergency housing, homelessness support and food relief.

If you've been affected by a natural disaster call 1800 875 153 or 02 6152 8444.

Find an Anglicare service provider in NSW.

Care for animals

Agricultural and Animal Services Hotline

The NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and Local Land Services (LLS) provides assistance to landholders and communities with animal welfare-related issues.

Contact the Agricultural and Animal Services Hotline on 1800 814 647 for:

  • emergency fodder (up to 3 days supply)
  • stock water
  • stock assessment
  • stock euthanasia and burial
  • livestock feeding and management advice
  • care of animals in evacuation centres.


For assistance with pets, livestock (including horses), and wildlife: 


For advice about assisting injured wildlife, visit WIRES Emergency Advice, or call 1300 094 737.

Replace lost documents

Information on how to replace your important documents. 

Birth, marriage, change of name certificates

If your birth, marriage or change of name certificate was destroyed due to a natural disaster, you can replace it for free within 6 months of the event.

Service NSW can help you to replace certificates registered in:

  • NSW 
  • other Australian states and territories
  • New Zealand. 

To request a free replacement, visit your nearest Service NSW Centre or call 13 77 88.

Citizenship documents


If your passport has been lost, damaged or destroyed in a declared natural disaster, you may be eligible for a free replacement. You do not need to complete an application form.

To order your replacement passport:

  • call the Australian Passport Information Service on 131 232
  • confirm your identity
  • verify that you were in a natural disaster area.

Australian citizenship certificate

Your certificate can be replaced free of charge provided you apply within 18 months of the declared natural disaster.

Visit the Department of Home Affairs.

Election enrolment

If you're temporarily away from your enrolled address due to a natural disaster, you don't need to update your enrolment.

Visit the Australian Electoral Commission's enrolment advice page.

Family law documents

If your divorce order, current orders or other family law documents have been lost or destroyed in the bushfires, you can get a replacement copy at no charge at a family law registry.

For more information visit the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.

Fishing licences

If your current recreational fishing licence has been lost or destroyed in the bushfires, it can be replaced at no charge by calling 02 4424 7499 or emailing

Medicare card

If your Medicare card has been lost, damaged or destroyed in a natural disaster, you can request a new card to replace your old card by:

Your new card will be sent in 3 to 4 weeks to the address you provide. You can use a digital copy of your Medicare card in the meantime.

Your new card will have the same Medicare number that you had before, but your old card will no longer be valid.

NSW Fair Trading licences, permits and certificates

Free replacement of the following licences, permits or certificates that have been lost, damaged or destroyed during a declared natural disaster:

  • home building: contractor, qualified supervisor, tradesperson
  • property and real estate
  • motor vehicle dealer or repairers
  • pawnbrokers and second-hand dealers
  • tattoo parlour or tattooist
  • owner-builder
  • tow truck.

To apply for a replacement card:

If you plan to rebuild or repair your home damaged or destroyed by a declared natural disaster:

  • Owner Builder Permits will be issued free of charge
  • all other standard requirements and associated development approvals apply.

For further assistance, visit your nearest Service NSW Centre or call 13 77 88.

SafeWork NSW licences, permits and certificates

Free replacement of the following licences, permits and certificates that have been destroyed or lost during a declared natural disaster: 

  • white card
  • high risk work licence
  • explosives licence
  • asbestos and demolition licence
  • plant registrations
  • traffic control licence.

To arrange a replacement, call 13 10 50.

Vehicle registrations and licences

If your driver licence was lost, damaged or destroyed during a natural disaster, you can download the Service NSW app to access your NSW Digital Driver Licence.

The digital driver licence is legal for use across NSW at no additional cost.

If you need to replace documents for your vehicle that were lost, damaged or destroyed during a natural disaster, you may be eligible for registration and licensing concessions and refunds.

For more information visit Transport for NSW.

Vessel registrations, boat and PWC licences

Replacement licences and registration certificates that were lost, damaged or destroyed in a natural disaster will be provided free of charge.

    The replacement will be sent to the address shown on the licence or registration if you request the documents either by:

    If you want the documents sent to a different address, you can either:

    Before a PWC licence can be re-issued, you will need to supply:

      Help with insurance claims

      Most policies cover bushfires, but you should contact your insurance provider to check your level of cover as well as waiting periods and exclusions.


      Get financial support

      Information on financial assistance, such as payments, grants and counselling available to people and businesses impacted by bushfires.

        Disaster relief payments

        For payments available to eligible people in disaster declared areas, call Services Australia on 180 22 66 about:

        Disaster relief grants

        Grants are made available to eligible individuals and families whose homes and essential household contents have been damaged or destroyed in bushfires (declared natural disasters). 

        Visit a Service NSW Centre or call 13 77 88 for NSW Government Disaster Relief Grants.


          The ATO will generally stop sending correspondence to people in areas affected by major disasters and can take other steps to help you sort out your tax affairs once the crisis has passed.

          To find out more:

          Australian Red Cross

          For help, information and resources before, during and after an emergency or disaster, visit the Red Cross

          Financial counselling services

          Financial institutions

          Banks offer help to customers affected by a natural disaster. This could include financial assistance packages, deferred loans, waived fees and grants. 

          Contact your bank for details.

          NSW Rural Assistance Authority (RAA)

          Call the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593 for:

          • sporting club assistance – concessional loans for eligible sporting clubs
          • church and non-profit organisation assistance – up to $15,000 recovery grants (33 LGAs) and concessional loans for eligible churches and non-profit organisations.
          • the Natural Disaster Transport Subsidy which pays for the cost of transporting:
            • fodder and/or water to an affected property
            • stock to sale or slaughter
            • stock to/from agistment.

          For more information see:

          Salvation Army

          The Salvation Army works with government agencies and community organisations to provide emotional support and referrals, and financial assistance to individuals and families including:

          • Hardship recovery grant – if you are experiencing ongoing extreme hardship as a result of a bushfire disaster
          • Loss of residence grant – if your primary place of residence (owned or leased) has been destroyed or rendered uninhabitable due to bushfires.

          The grants are offered for declared natural disasters, limited to one grant per household, and available to eligible applicants over the age of 18, who:

          • suffered loss from bushfires
          • lived or worked in a bushfire affected area at the time of the fires.

          To apply for a grant, or if you have further questions, call 1300 662 217 or email

          Clearing your property

          Get mental health support

          Natural disasters and traumatic events impact much more than just the physical environment. They can have a profound effect on the mental health and well-being of affected communities.

          We have a list of resources to support anyone seeking mental health services and advice.

          Phone and internet access

          Internet service providers are offering mobile phone charge waivers and other assistance.

          Mobile phone charge waivers

          Telstra, Optus and Vodafone offer customers in bushfire-affected areas with unlimited access to emergency service websites at no cost.


          Optus customers who have been impacted by the bushfires can call 1300 301 671  for information on:

          • free call diversions from an Optus fixed home phone to any mobile or fixed number

          • extended timeframes for bill payments

          • bill waivers in instances of extreme financial hardship

          • free suspension, relocation or cancellation of an Optus fixed service

          • free prepaid recharges for eligible impacted customers.

          Note: Optus is covering the costs of eligible volunteer firefighters’ mobile services for December 2019 and January 2020. If you’re an active volunteer firefighter with an Optus bill, call 1300 301 671 to see if you qualify.


          Telstra customers who've suffered severe damage or loss of their premises can call 132 203 for information on:

          • free call diversion from the customer’s Telstra fixed phone service for a maximum period of 6 months from the date of the fire
          • a one-off credit to the value of $500 including GST to the customer’s Telstra fixed phone account to help cover the costs of the following, if required:
            • connection of a Telstra fixed phone service at one temporary residence
            • re-connection of a Telstra fixed phone service at the customer’s original permanent premises.

          In areas where customers are waiting for network damage to be repaired, or where they are still evacuated, the following short-term measures will be in place for a maximum period of 3 months:

          • free use of Telstra public payphones in the affected areas
          • free use of Telstra Air payphone hotspots in the affected areas
          • free call diversion from an affected fixed home or business phone service to another fixed or mobile service of the customer’s choice, regardless of the carrier
          • customers who use the free call diversion to divert their affected fixed home or business phone to their Telstra mobile service can also make local and STD® calls on their mobile at fixed-line rates, in accordance with their selected plan (limited to one designated Telstra mobile per affected household or business).
          • affected Telstra mobile customers who do not have a Telstra home phone can receive a one-off credit to the value of $100 inc. GST (limited to one mobile phone per Telstra mobile account).


          Vodafone customers can apply for Vodafone’s hardship assistance and may be eligible for bill waivers, payment extensions and waived cancellation/late fees.

          Call 1300 650 405 for help or more information.

          Transport – refunds, fee waivers, concessions


          The $40 tag security deposit on an E-Toll tag will be waived if your tag has been lost, damaged or destroyed during a natural disaster.

          Number plates

          To reapply for number plates that have been lost or destroyed as a result of a natural disaster, you must provide a completed Number Plate Form – PDF at a Service NSW Centre. If applicable, number plate reissue, remake or hold fees may be waived.

          For more information, visit Transport for NSW.

          Motor vehicle stamp duty and fines

          If your motor vehicle was written off in a declared natural disaster, you may be able to get a refund on any motor vehicle duty paid on a replacement vehicle.

          Revenue NSW may also:

          • give you more time to lodge any documents or returns
          • defer enforcing any fines against you
          • extend your payment deadlines
          • agree not to charge you interest
          • arrange for you to pay any debts in instalments.

          For more information, visit Natural disaster relief – Revenue NSW

          Registration and licences

          Registration and licensing concessions and refunds will be offered to customers if their vehicle/vessel or other relevant documentation has been lost, damaged or destroyed during the NSW bushfires. 

          For more information, see Replace lost documents.

          Destroyed vessels

          If your vessel has been destroyed in a natural disaster, you're entitled to a refund of any remaining funds on the vessel registration.

          If you can, supply a copy of the insurance claim deeming the vessel a total loss, or a statutory declaration with details of the circumstances. If you're not able to supply either of these documents, complete the Request for Refund (Maritime) – PDF.

          Note: Attach a photo of the destroyed vessel (if possible). In the space under 'Other Maritime Refunds', clearly state that the vessel was destroyed by a natural disaster and include the address where the vessel was destroyed, if it is not your normal address.


          If you're planning to rebuild on land that is designated as bushfire prone you have a legal obligation to consider the potential of bushfire and meet the requirements of Planning for Bush Fire Protection (PBP) and AS3959.

          The NSW Rural Fire Service provides guides on:

          • the planning and development process
          • building after bushfire:
            • your level of risk
            • development application and complying development
            • protection measures.
          Last updated: 3 August 2023