Wednesday's outbreak spreak to just below the top of Round Mountain.
Wednesday's outbreak spreak to just below the top of Round Mountain. Blainey Woodham/Tweed Daily News

Bushfire fight intensifies

FIVE helicopters, 17 fire trucks and 51 crews were yesterday fighting a bushfire west of Cabarita that has been burning since Saturday.

And firefighters were shocked to discover the majority of residents in the Bogangar and Tanglewood area would not be prepared if disaster struck.

The bushfire consumed another 100 hectares yesterday, bringing the total to about 700 hectares, when flames jumped containment lines at Sliprails Road, Rural Fire Service Superintendent David Cook said.

“It’s gone up to just below the top of Round Mountain, adjacent to Sliprails Road,” Supt Cook said.

“Continued intensive water-bombing managed to pull it up.

“It hasn’t spread around to Cabarita, which is 1.5 kilometres from the outbreak.”

Supt Cook said crews continued to work on containing the fire last night.

“We’re using bulldozers to construct the ‘donkey trail’, a containment line used in 2004,” he said.

“We’ll use it as a fall-back if the fire goes around the mountain.

“It’s still creeping around but we’ve halted the forward spread.”

Supt Cook said no homes were immediately threatened.

“Three properties on Slip- rails Road, where the fire went up, were threatened but they were successfully protected.

“Our crews are working on property protection where required.”

RFS public liaison officer Stuart O’Keefe said more than 125 people attended a community information night at Cabarita Sports Club and the majority did not have a plan in place if their home became threatened by bushfire.

“It was disappointing that a lot of people hadn’t seen our bushfire survival plan,” Mr O’Keefe said.

“People need to empower themselves to make informed decisions.

“A lot of people still thought we would knock on their doors and tell them to evacuate.”

A separate fire continued to burn yesterday on about 150 hectares of the Pinnacle, part of the Border Ranges.

“It’s still uncontained and growing in size,” Mr O’Keefe said.

“Five fire trucks and two bulldozers are currently working on containment lines to the rear of rural properties.”

Both fires are believed to have started on Saturday night from lightning strikes.

The RFS had yesterday received no reports of property damage.

Clothiers Creek Road was opened briefly at 10.30am yesterday but closed again due to the fire outbreak.

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