Fire Crews Race To Contain Blazes

Fire Crews Race To Contain Blazes

28 February 2007

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Tasmania — Fire crews are using infra-redequipment from helicopters to help detect hidden parts of a bushfire threateninga world heritage wilderness area in southern Tasmania. Firefighters flown in tothe South West National Park yesterday are battling to contain the blaze aheadof a forecast weather change bringing hot winds on Friday and Saturday.

“We use the infra-red camera early in the mornings to scan the boundary ofthe fire and that tells us where the heat is being generated,” TasmaniaParks and Wildlife southern region manager David Whitelaw said.

“We use that technology to direct firefighters to where fires are stillburning. Some of them may be burning in peat and not easily detectable bysmoke.”

He said crews yesterday and today had made reasonable progress but added theywould be pulled out if the weather changed for the worst.

Three fires caused by lightning on February 16 are burning in the park.

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