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Fires rage at Wunghnu, Bunbartha and Numurkah

Emergency warnings were issued for Numurkah, Naring, Invergordon and Wunghnu as 89 Country Fire Authority appliances battled to control raging fires.

ALEX BOLKAS February 10, 2014 8:35am

Firefighters worked into the night to tackle fires at Wunghnu, Bunbartha and Numurkah


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Firefighters were last night battling to control three separate Goulburn Valley grassfires which burnt more than 5000ha.

Shepparton Country Fire Authority Incident Control Centre media officer Robert Scott said 89 appliances were working on blazes in Wunghnu, Bunbartha and Reillys Pit Rd, Numurkah.

He said they were expected to continue overnight.

The fires raged in blistering conditions, with the mercury yesterday peaking at 41.5°C.

A Wunghnu haystack and machinery shed was the only structure confirmed destroyed.

As of 9pm a Wunghnu grassfire had burnt through 1500ha and was heading in a south-easterly direction toward Boundary Rd.

A Bunbartha grassfire had burnt 2000ha and was travelling fast in a north easterly direction from Barmah Shepparton Road towards Wunghnu.

Mr Scott said a Reillys Pit Rd fire had burnt 2075ha.

A CFA spokesman said the Reilly’s Pit Rd fire was a fast-moving out-of-control grass fire that was heading south-east towards Numurkah thanks to a wind change.

The spokesman said an emergency warning had been issued for Numurkah, Naring, Invergordon and Wunghnu.

Bunbartha and Katandra residents had been warned to keep an eye on changing conditions.

‘‘The west, south and east fringes (of Numurkah) are in imminent danger — it’s too late for them to leave,’’ he said.

He said residents from Numurkah, Invergordon and Naring were encouraged to evacuate to Cobram Sports Stadium.

Mr Scott said the wind was moving in a southerly direction.

‘‘We’ve issued a watch and act as far afield as Strathmerton,’’ Mr Scott said.

He said a NSW strike team had been deployed to protect assets in Numurkah.

Road closures included Goulburn Valley Hwy between Tallygaroopna and Numurkah, the Barmah-Shepparton Rd and the Katamatite-Shepparton Rd between Congupna and Dramanure Rd.

For more fire coverage see today’s Shepparton News.

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