Boonooroo Road was closed for several hours yesterday as a fierce bushfire humped it, burning the pine forest in Tuan.
Boonooroo Road was closed for several hours yesterday as a fierce bushfire humped it, burning the pine forest in Tuan. Karleila Thomsen

Choppers water-bomb huge blaze

WATER-BOMBING choppers and firefighters worked together to tackle flames up to 20 metres high during a raging bushfire on Boonooroo Road Wednesday.

Emergency crews were called to the blaze about noon. By 2pm they were almost considering evacuating the Tuan Sawmill as strong winds pushed the inferno closer and closer to the Maaroom and Boonooroo townships.

More than 400 hectares of bushland and forestry were wiped out by the time crews managed to get the fire under control at sunset.

“It started on the northern side of Boonooroo Road around midday,” said Brian Dale from Queensland Fire and Rescue Rural Operations.

“From there it has jumped across the road to the Tuan Forestry.

“It travelled pretty quick, pushed by the northerly winds.”

Those winds were expected to swing around the south-east last night. In preparation bulldozers were called in to prepare fire breaks around the edge of the fire.

Two water-bombing choppers – one with the capacity to carry 300 litres and the other able to carry 1000 litres – worked quickly to dump as much water as possible on the flames.

They were able to fill up at two nearby dams.

Maryborough firefighter Paul Kelly was in charge of the rural and urban crews. He said that at the peak of the blaze his crews were up against flames “as high as the powerlines”.

“The wind was making it impossible,” he said.

For volunteer Burrum Heads firefighter Jim Kennedy it was a long day.

The Boonooroo Road blaze was the third bushfire he attended that day.

“It's been pretty busy,” he said. “It's our fifth call-out all week.”

In light of the current severe bushfire conditions, firefighters are urging people to remain vigilant.

They warn that even small grass fires can become uncontrollable and fast moving in these conditions.

Fraser Coast resident who see a fire are urged to call triple-0 immediately.

Do you know what to do in the advent of a bushfire? Read Qld bushfire safety tips.

Fires broke out in several areas across Australia on Wednesday. Read more about them...


Keep up-to-date with weather information for Fraser Coast.


Keep up-to-date with fire bans and warnings for Fraser Coast.


Read more: recent fires in Fraser Coast area.


Do you have your own stories or pictures? Email us at editorial@finda.com.au
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