Homes under threat from coast inferno
By ROXANNE MILLAR AN out-of-control beast with unpredictable behavioural patterns and a bad temper.
That is what more than 60 firefighters faced yesterday, when they came head-to-head with a massive bushfire that engulfed land south of Clothiers Creek Road in Bogangar.
Roads were cut, homes put under close watch and residents treated for smoke inhalation as the fire raced out of control at Round Mountain.
By yesterday afternoon, strong winds had pushed it in a south-westerly direction and had hampered any efforts to bring it under control.
Several homes were under serious threat and nearby residents were poised for evacuation.
Two helicopters had been called in to drown the blazes from above, while firefighters arrived from Lismore and Ballina to assist in property protection.
Firefighters will continue to fight it today.
Cudgen Rural Fire Service captain Mark Eglington said it was a nightmare situation that they were having trouble bringing under control.
He said the blaze had first started on Tuesday evening when a motorist along Clothiers Creek Road noticed a tiny flame and tried extinguishing it with a portable fire extinguisher.
"She was very upset she couldn't stop it, but it had just taken off too fast," he said.
Throughout Tuesday night, local crews kept the fire under control, but yesterday morning it skipped containment lines.
Mr Eglington said yesterday afternoon firefighters were concentrating wholly on property protection.
"We didn't think we would be here today, but it jumped the lines and the wind keeps changing," he said.