The Wirritin and Budawang fires are entering their third week having burnt out 6,682hectares. Over the weekend crews had been on alert again as blustery conditions changed the status to a "watch & act".
On Monday Mark Williams IC from the Shoalhaven RFS said “What a difference an hour makes! (let alone a day).”
“Today (Monday) started with a flurry of activity on the Fire ground with extreme fire danger and a Total Fire Ban in place. Additional resources were on scene to assist in the containing of the fire.
Whilst the key hold points of the Stringybark Sector (East Division) and the Webb’s Sector (West Division) held, the weather certainly did its best to push those containments to their limits.”
“As predicted and despite the best efforts of the aviation, the breach over the Yadboro River made significant ground during the day. This saw the fire move quickly to the North West under the influence of the Southerly change when it arrived in the early afternoon.
This resulted in a “Watch and Act” alert being put in place for two farming properties in the Wog Wog area. Luckily however, the change also brought with it some moister air and this quietened down the fire and at last light, it still hadn’t gotten up on top of the escarpment.
“To put things in perspective in relation to how erratic the weather is in this area, at one point during the day, the following was recorded: Eastern Division: 16.5 degrees, 84% humidity, winds: Easterly 0-10km; Western Division: 26 degrees, 17% humidity, winds: North West 15-20km.
In the northern division the predominant activity during the day was with the Yadboro (Wog Wog) and retardant line (Wirritin ridge) breaches.
“The Wog Wog breach as mentioned earlier increased in size significantly. Whilst the fire remains below the Budawang Range escarpment, it is unlikely that this will remain the case over the coming few days. Once on top of the escarpment, whilst containment lines have been identified, these are very widely spaced and will see the fire increase in size markedly should there continue to be no rainfall. As a result of this breach, the Moreton National Park was closed to the West of the Clyde River and South of Main Road 92.”
“The Wirritin Ridge breach could not be caught/contained, the next fall back lines are now required to be implemented. This is the area bounded by the Yadboro River to the North, and the Belowra Creek to the East. It is likely that aerial incendiaries will be used to bring the fire to these containment lines under cooler conditions over the next few days.”
IN the East, South & West Divisions, there was “good work from the ground troops who again today saw no break in the fire from the designated control lines. Work will continue over the next few days to monitor area of unburnt bush and blackout and patrol the areas. RAFT teams were only deployed via foot today due to the high winds and extreme fire danger rating.”
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