|Date(s) October 1996 – January 1997|
The 1996–97 Australian bushfire season was the season for bushfires in Australia over the summer of 1996–1997. The most prominent fires during the season were in the Dandenong Ranges and the Mornington Peninsula in the state of Victoria.
In October 1996, 1 house was destroyed in a bushfire near Ravensbourne in southeast Queensland.
From 19–21 January 1997, fires burnt over 400 hectares through much of the Dandenong Ranges and the Mornington Peninsula, precipitated by over forty degree Celsius dry heat and strong northerly winds. Three people were killed and forty injured. Forty-three houses were destroyed and another 45 damaged. Fires began at all locations except the Dandenongs on the 19th, the Dandenongs fires began on the morning of the 21st in the foothills of the western face of the ranges. It was suspected that the fires in the Dandenongs were deliberately lit.
The areas most affected by these fires included: