Firefighters say an abandoned car may have been the starting point of a fire on the banks of the Goulburn River in Toolamba.FIONA BROOM November 22, 2012 4:33am
An abandoned car could have been the cause of a fire that burnt through grassland at Toolamba yesterday, firefighters say.
Investigators are working to discover exactly what caused the blaze, but firefighters said it appeared a car found on the banks of the Goulburn River might have been the starting point.
Country Fire Authority district operations officer Peter Brereton said it was not clear how long the car had been there or whether it was stolen.
He said police would also be investigating.
Warm, gusty winds and temperatures hovering about 30°C caused the fire to spread rapidly and it was declared out of control.
But the riverbanks helped crews contain the fire and the all clear was given about 2.45
Mr Brereton said recent grassfires, including another at Bearii yesterday afternoon, were just a taste of what the region could expect during the fire danger period, which begins on December 5.
He said grass was drying rapidly and there had been no rain for the best part of a month.
‘‘The hot and dry winds are sucking out the residual moisture from the ground,’’ he said.
‘‘People need to be very, very careful with any activities in rural areas — the countryside is starting to burn.’’
He said the previous three summers had been wet, but it did not appear this summer would be, while grass growth in winter had created heavy fuel loads.
Mr Brereton said people needed to be ‘‘incredibly careful’’ undertaking any fire prevention such as slashing or burning off.
He said windy days had to be ruled out for people considering fuel reduction activities.
Police are appealing for witnesses to an overnight theft at Kialla’s Riverside Plaza.
The Yarrawonga and District Cemetery Trust has been awarded a $50,000 grant from the Department of Health to undertake development work at the Yarrawonga cemetery.
Members of Murchison Book Club are hosting a literary lunch with Vivien Achia, author of Marrying Italian — When Love is Not Enough.
Echuca shearer Franky Atkinson has earned himself a return trip to New Zealand next year after an impressive run of performances in shearing competitions.
William Napier, whose remains lie in Rochester cemetery, received the Empire's highest honour for gallantry while fighting for the British army during the Indian Mutiny.
Tongala family hopes for transplant call for six-year-old.
Family of former Seymour man killed in a road crash in Los Angeles before Christmas set up a Melbourne University scholarship in his honour.
Tocumwal's Don Elgin is aiming to compete at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland
The Cancer Council Relay For Life fundraiser is a cause close to the hearts, and feet, of many district residents.
Redgum sculpture is carved at Thompsons Beach, Cobram.
As well as being a massive success, the Deniliquin Lawn Tennis Club's annual Easter tournament featured several locals playing in grand finals.
Murray Goulburn has lifted its milk prices to about $6.66 kg milk solids.
Benalla's Joda Plex was named Goulburn Ovens Institute of TAFEs student of the year at her graduation this month.
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