Australia — The Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE) isinspecting the sports oval at Bruthen, after reports the oval was damaged byfirefighting efforts.
Sports ovals at Heyfield, Briagolong, Bruthen, Bairnsdale and Swifts Creekhave been used as staging grounds for fire trucks.
Sports groups are concerned some of the grounds are now dangerous to play onbecause of the damage.
Laurie Jeremiah from the DSE says it could be some months before the groundsare restored.
“It’s the middle of the drought, not the best time we could do the worknow, but that work might fail due to lack of water or extreme summer again, sobest to wait until it’s the best time and make sure that we do achieve theresults that we’d want professionally,” he said.
The secretary of the Omeo district football league, Nick Peat, says theground at Bruthen has lost most of its topsoil.
“Very uneven, there were gouges in it, and you can imagine what trucksdo with a fair bit of weight on them, particularly loaded with water, machineryhad to be parked there at times, coming in and out, a lot of them do leak waterat times, and a bit of mud here and there, so not in a good condition,” hesaid.