FIRST RESPONDERS: Jason Lavis, Clementine Morawitz, and Tommy after fighting fires on the Capricorn Highway.
FIRST RESPONDERS: Jason Lavis, Clementine Morawitz, and Tommy after fighting fires on the Capricorn Highway.

Dry conditions keep fire danger high across Central Highlands

HIGH fire dangers will persist throughout the week as temperatures hover close to 40 degrees across the region.

Fire ratings for the Central Highlands have dropped from severe to very high, but firefighting conditions remain challenging because of the warmth and lack of rain, a Bureau of Meteorology spokeswoman said.

On Sunday afternoon, smoke from a bushfire near Comet obscured part of the Capricorn Highway.

It was contained by QFES crews about 1.30pm, but reignited about 3pm and was managed by farmers working nearby.

QFES returned half an hour later, and by 3.40pm the fire was finally extinguished.

Clementine Morawitz brought water to slow the fire.
Clementine Morawitz brought water to slow the fire.

Farmer Jason Lavis was working on an adjacent field when the fire first started. He spent hours helping to douse the fire and create fuel breaks.

“We were here working, and it started just off the side of the road,” he said.

“It took about two hours [to put out] from when it started. We went back to fill our vehicles with water, then came back to cool any hot spots.

“There was a cloud of smoke coming up, so we jumped around to it.”

Mr Lavis as the flames are brought under control.
Mr Lavis as the flames are brought under control.

Downed power lines caused another fire near Mr Lavis’s property earlier in the week. He said being ready to combat them was part of the job.

“We don’t really worry about it; we prepare for it.

“I don’t usually carry a water tank in my ute, but it’s been in there about two weeks now just because this weather’s been hot and dry and every year we get something along the side of the highway here.

“You’ve just got to do it.”

If you need help, call triple-0 immediately.


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