Pitch Festival Continues Amid Fire Danger Confusion

Published March 9, 2024

The Pitch Music and Arts Festival is currently underway near western Victoria's bushland, raising concerns due to the extreme fire risk in the area. Despite warnings from the Country Fire Authority (CFA), the festival organizers have not officially canceled the event, causing distress and confusion among festival-goers and their families.

Concerns in Extreme Fire Conditions

This weekend, the south-west district where the festival is located has been given an extreme fire danger rating, which is just one step below the highest level of alert. The CFA has clearly advised against attending the festival and recommended those not yet present to avoid the area.

Mixed Messages and Festival Response

Online, attendees and their relatives have expressed their frustration over the festival's ongoing status and the unclear instructions they've received. Although the festival warned patrons to heed the CFA's advice, they proceeded with the event. Organizers offered shuttles for those wishing to leave and urged those still planning to join to prepare for the heat and to stay safe.

Parents' Concerns and Organizational Challenges

With limited options to contact those already at the festival, many parents have taken to social media to share their anxieties. The decision not to cancel the event amid the fire danger has attracted criticism, with some calling it irresponsible. Calls for refunds from ticket holders following the CFA's guidance have also surfaced.

Official Statements and Future Actions

While the CFA provided advice, they are not in a position to authorize the cancellation of events; this role falls to local councils with input from emergency services. The aftermath of the festival will likely involve a thorough investigative review.

festival, fire, safety