Home feared lost in Victoria

Home feared lost in Victoria

12 January 2007

published by www.news.com.au

Australia — Stock, buildings and possibly a house have been lost tobushfires overnight while lightning sparked new blazes across Victoria.

An unoccupied house is believed to have been razed at Tambo Crossing inGippsland while fires also destroyed fencing, cattle, sheep and haysheds, fireauthorities said.

The fire has crossed the Great Alpine Road and is now on both sides of the roadat Tambo Crossing.

Properties remain under threat as fire escalates on three fronts at TamboCrossing, Ward Crossing and Bruthen, with residents told to be ready for emberattacks and spot fires.

Department of Environment and Sustainability (DSE) spokesman Pat Groenhout saidhe hoped to have a clearer picture of property losses later today.

Lighting storms have created new headaches for firefighters, sparking new blazesacross the state, including the Dandenong Ranges.

Nine new fires were ignited between Marysville and Alexandra in north-eastVictoria and crews have deployed a sky crane to attack the fires before they getout of hand, Mr Groenhout said.

The Tatong-Watchbox Creek Road fire, sparked by lightning yesterday afternoon20km south-east of Benalla, is causing crews particular concern.

It has already burned more than 6000ha.

The DSE has warned the fire front is expected to impact on properties northeastof the fire, toward the Upper Ryans Creek Road, Middle Creek Road and southernpart of Upper Fifteen Mile Creek Road.

The blaze is burning to the south of these areas, with spotting ahead of themain fire.

Lightning also was reported to have ignited more fires near Maryknoll and nearTonimbuk in the Dandenong Ranges overnight, and around Cheshunt, south ofWhitfield in northeast Victoria.

Mr Groenhout said the fires were small and not cause for concern at this stage.

Ten crews were working on the blaze at Maryknoll, while there were three atCheshunt and two at Tonimbuk.

Earlier this week, a heritage hut in the Alpine National Park was discovereddestroyed by fire in the north-east of the state.

Weston’s Hut, which was in a remote area near the West Kiewa River, was engulfedby flames earlier this month. 

South Australia

Meanwhile, a bushfire that threatened homes in the Adelaide Hills has beencontained.

The Country Fire Service (CFS) said the blaze was brought under control lastnight after destroying more than 2000ha of scrub, tree plantations, grass andforest in the Mt Bold area southeast of Adelaide.

Up to 400 firefighters were deployed to the area along with 80 CFS units.

The crews established control lines yesterday and a CFS spokeswoman said somewould remain in the area over the next few days to monitor the situation untilit was considered safe.

At the height of the blaze, up to 60 homes were threatened but police saiddamage was light.

The fire destroyed one home, an unoccupied historic cottage, six sheds andtwo cars.

Some property owners also lost a small number of cows and horses, along withseveral kilometres of fencing.

The CFS said that while the blaze was contained, some areas were stillburning and there would be a continued impact on local properties from smoke.

“Residents and other people travelling in the area are advised to takecare as local roads are reopened as emergency service vehicles will still beoperating in the area under conditions of reduced visibility,” a CFSspokeswoman said.

The cause of the bushfire was yet to be determined and was underinvestigation. 

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