- Latest news
- South West
- South East
- North East
- North West
- Media Releases
- Community Safety
- Events / Fundraising / Offers
- Incidents - Bushfire
- Incidents - Other
- Incidents - Structure
- Incidents - Vehicle / Rescue / Hazmat
- Vehicles / Equipment / Buildings
- Operational Information
- Planning & Research
- Training & Recruitment
- Youth & Juniors
- Health & Safety
- CEO Updates
- Chief Officer Updates
Fire stretches resources at Sunbury
Just before 3pm yesterday (14th January), multiple Triple Zero calls were received for a reported grass and scrub fire in the Mitchells Lane and Moore Road area in Sunbury.
With Sunbury, Gisborne and Diggers Rest paged, Sunbury FCV, with Station Officer Adam Whitford on board, proceeded directly into Moore road to find a medium sized grass fire spreading, while Tanker 2 started to tackle the fire.
“I initially Made Tankers 5, as it looked like we could pull it up early on,” explained SO Whitford. “But once it got into thicker grassland and pines, and the wind picked up, I requested additional resources, as well as Air Support.”
“I proceeded to do a size-up of the fire, with my offsider starting to cut gates so crews could get in to fight the fire. We also had to do an emergency evacuation of residents in Moore Road due to fire impinging on a number of homes.”
With high winds fanning the flames, the fire started to jump onto the Calder Freeway median strip, and threaten to cross the freeway completely into paddocks and bushland.
With the District 14 Ground Observers enroute, along with Operations Officer David Clancy arriving, a call to police to close the freeway so that Tankers could attack the fire was requested.
A number of Strike Teams were activated by RDO14, some coming straight off the fireground of the previous Little River fire. An Emergency Warning was also issued, and at the height of the fire an Emergency Alert (text and voice messages) was also sent to a small group of residents under direct threat of the fire. The Emergency Warning was downgraded to a Watch and Act message a short time
later once crews had the fire under control.
With the head of the fire extinguished by some fantastic work by initial ground crews, the extra resources were sent along the freeway to stop the lateral spread of fire from jumping across the freeway, with air support dousing a number of large burning pockets of fire behind houses in Barrington Lane.
Due to the severe conditions, a number of firefighters needed to be checked over by Ambulance Victoria with heat exhaustion, with ambulances staying onscene for the duration of the incident to provide welfare and support.
An ‘Under Control’ wordback was placed on the fire nearly 2 hours after the first page, by Gisborne ICC, who took over control early on, freeing up the Incident Controller to run the fire on the ground. The last Tankers to leave the fire was after 10:30pm on Tuesday night.
Sunbury – FCV, Tanker 1, Tanker 2, Pumper-Tanker.
Toolern Vale – Tanker 1.
Bulla - Tanker 1, Tanker 2.
Craigieburn – Tanker 1, Tanker 2.
Clarkefield - Tanker 2.
Diggers Rest – Tanker 1, Tanker 2, Car.
Gisborne – FCV, Tanker 1, Tanker 2.
Melton - Pumper-Tanker.
Riddells Creek – Tanker.
Mount Cottrell Group – FOV.
Operations Officers David Clancy and Gavin Wright.
District 14 Ground Observers.
Hoppers Crossing Car (Fire Investigation).
Strike Teams from District 2 (0230, 0221) and District 14 (1401).
The Incident Controller was Station Officer Adam Whitford from Sunbury Fire Brigade, with
sectorisation support from OO David Clancy and OO Gavin Wright. Station Officer Tony Smith took over night shift operations.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation by Victoria Police Detectives and CFA Fire Investigators.
Pictures by Blair Dellemijn – CFA Photographer.