Several fires rip across region

A fire burns out of control in inaccessible terrain in the Clarence Valley.
A fire burns out of control in inaccessible terrain in the Clarence Valley. Boyd Townsend Air System Operator

FIREFIGHTERS were kept busy at the weekend bringing a number of fires across the region under control.

Yesterday afternoon about 30 firefighters fought to control a large blaze at Myall Creek, south-east of Casino, covering 517ha, while another 30 firefighters put in a 10km back-burn at Hootons Rd, Bonalbo, to contain a 300ha fire which was burning in inaccessible terrain.

East of Tabulam, two water bombers were deployed to put out several fires burning over an area covering about 50ha.

Casino RFS operations officer Inspector Daniel Ainsworth said firefighters were making the most of easing winds to bring a number of fires under control.

There was also another small fire brought under control at Byrrill Creek, west of Murwillumbah.

In the Clarence Valley firefighters had to contend with about 20 separate blazes.

These included a 1600ha blaze at Mattiers Creek to the west of Grafton and a 350ha blaze at Middle Creek to Grafton's south.

Firefighters also battled a 600ha fire to the south-east of Grafton at Featherstone's Creek and another large blaze north west of Copmanhurst in the Stockyard Creek area.

The remaining 16 or so fires were monitored throughout the day and as of 4pm no further action was required.

No lives were lost and property damage was limited to one shed and a car.

RFS spokesman Stuart O'Keefe easing of the wind played a part.

"The wind has not been as strong compared to the last few days," Mr O'Keefe said.

"The easterly wind has slightly increased humidity and it does not let the fires run as fast.

"This assists our ability to control the fires."

Landholders are still allowed to burn off in preparation for summer, but are being urged to talk to their local RFS before commencing any controlled burns.

"This year's rain has stimulated a lot of grass growth and the good rains over the past couple of years have hindered land managers and the RFS from meeting their haz- ard reduction objectives," Mr O'Keefe said.

He urged landholders to remain vigilant and ensure they have adequate fire control measures in place before undertaking any burning activity on their properties.

He also said that landowners and property managers have alternatives to fire.

He said slashing and weeding methods can be equally effective ways to protect your assets and all methods should take the weather forecast into consideration.

Topics:  bushfires casino rural fire service weather

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