District CFA units were on high alert last week and early this week with several fires in the region.By Bronwyn Beyers
District CFA units were on high alert last week with several grassfires in the region, including a large fire at Toolleen on Wednesday which burnt-out 40 hectares.
Heathcote Fire Brigade captain Shane Nixon said the fire broke out at a property on the Northern Hwy about 9km north of the Toolleen Hotel about 4pm.
‘‘There were 18 units out there including the forward command vehicle, slip on and quick fill truck from Heathcote, which can be filled off a dam,’’ Mr Nixon said.
m‘‘There was also a grader and the DSE had a multi-function dozer for along the creek bed, which needed a hell of a lot of work because the fuel load was so heavy.’’
Neighbours pitched in to fight the fire, which threatened a house on the property, destroyed a young olive grove and damaged a garage, including a four-wheel drive parked inside it.
Heathcote Fire Brigade officer Carl Watkins said the fire was located directly opposite the site of a major grassfire in Toolleen last year.
‘‘Everyone’s nervous out there at the moment and we were conscious of the location,’’ he said.
CFA brigades also attended a small grassfire in Chapman’s Lane, Heathcote on Saturday and grassfires fanned by strong winds at Toolleen and Knowsley on Sunday.
Mr Watkins said the Heathcote fire broke out about 3.30pm on Saturday afternoon and burnt close to a hectare.
‘‘We had chopper support from Bendigo and they actually got there before the other units arrived, so it was a great response,’’ Mr Watkins said.
The fire threatened a home on the property, which Mr Watkins said was unoccupied.
A large grassfire spanning 50ha also broke out on Saturday in the Puckapunyal military precinct and was still burning out of control in a contained area on Monday, fanned by strong winds and dry conditions.
A large bushfire also broke out on Saturday in a blue gum forest plantation at Whiteheads Creek near Seymour.
The fire burned out more than 1800ha and on Monday was still burning out of control, though contained.
‘‘That was a dirty fire and a long night,’’ Mr Watkins said.
‘‘It’s tough terrain in there and you can’t drive the trucks up and down the hills because they’re too steep so you have to fight the fire from the ridges, which we could drive along.
‘‘There’s not a lot they can do other than try to contain the fire until it burns itself out.’’
The fire was large enough that it could be seen at night from Heathcote and, though brought under control by Sunday evening, on Monday the fire flared back up again and was still burning out of control in a contained area.
On Monday afternoon, Heathcote Fire Brigade was called to a small grassfire at Eppalock with Mosquito Creek CFA, which was quickly brought under control.
Mr Watkins commended the DSE on its quick response to district fires and the support given to CFA crews.
‘‘They’re a real bonus when they’re around,’’ Mr Watkins said.
Nicki McLennan is showing her sister Taylah the ultimate Christmas generosity - a stem cell transplant to help Taylah's ongoing cancer battle.
After a tennis career spanning 62 years, of which the last 35 years have been as a coach, Yarrawonga's Jon Coleman is set to retire at the end of 2013.
The recent Kyabram Master Pairs, played over six days with crack sides from near and far, attracted some talented bowlers eager to win the prestige event.
The murder trial of Echuca woman Tracey Kerr has been adjourned until next year.
Three Goornong Fire Brigade firefighters recently completed a CFA course on safety surrounding urban firefighting and using breathing apparatuses.
Kyabram Lawn Tennis Club’s annual junior singles tournament again attracted good numbers from across the district.
But have opponents given up the fight?
Tocumwal Pre-School students are proudly flying their KITE at the Tocumwal Lions Community Hostel.
Tooborac Fire Brigade visited Tooborac Primary School last Tuesday to help the school complete its bushfire emergency management plan.
Residents urged to renew fruit fly baits to support local orchards.
A Korean company has a proposal with the NSW Government to built a $90 million ethanol plant in Deniliquin.
SPC Ardmona, is sending eight containers loaded with $250,000 of fruit and vegetables to cyclone ravaged Philippines.
The hunt is on for a buyer for Benalla and Mansfield Toyota after the business went into receivership last fortnight.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.