News & Media

Grampians fire update 19 January

By: CFA Media

Category: Incidents - Bushfire

  6.16 AM 19 January, 2014

Location: District 15 News, District 16 News, District 17 News

Views: 5768

6.00AM UPDATE: The clean-up and recovery from the Grampians Northern Complex fire has begun with a number of communities and roads reopening.

Incident Controller Andrew Morrow said while there are still some sections of the fire which are not yet under control, emergency services have been focussing on returning residents to their homes and opening major roads, where it is safe to do so.

“Overnight there has been some works occurring on the Western Highway to remove fallen trees and this morning we’re expecting to open this stretch of road from the intersection of Stawell-Warracknabeal Road to Horsham,” he said.

“There is still a lot of work to do in back burning and blacking out to ensure the fire is safe, but we also need to move in to the recovery stage so that the wider Grampians area can get back to operating as usual.”

Yesterday, the Horsham Incident Control Centre (ICC) also took over control from the Ararat ICC of the Bunjils Cave Road fire at Black Range, south-west of Stawell. Horsham ICC has also taken over from the Hamilton ICC for a number of fires in Southern Grampians which are now all contained or controlled.

“Late last night the Black Range bushfire took an unexpected turn and jumped containment lines, moving towards Stawell but the threat has now eased and we have an Advice message current for this fire. There is still a significant amount of work to do in establishing control lines and blacking out in some difficult terrain,” Mr Morrow said.

He added that all parts of the Grampians North Complex fire had been downgraded to an Advice message, but said firefighters are still conducting back burning operations at the southern end of the Mt Difficult Range near Halls Gap.

“Back burning works progressed well overnight and we’re hoping to take advantage of more favourable weather conditions over the next few days to complete these works,” Mr Morrow said.

Yesterday the community of Pomonal reopened while Halls Gap was opened to residents. Today it is expected Dadswell’s Bridge will reopen and Halls Gap will be open to the general public. The Grampians National Park will remain closed until noon tomorrow, Monday 20 January.

Residents and people visiting the Grampians can keep informed with the latest traffic information and road closures by visiting

You can stay up-to-date with the latest warnings and advice by tuning in to ABC local radio, commercial and designated community radio stations or Sky News TV, via, by downloading the FireReady smartphone application, through CFA’s Twitter and Facebook accounts or by phoning the Victorian Bushfire Information Line on 1800 240 667.


  • The fire is suspected to have started from lightning on Wednesday, 15 January.
  • It is estimated to have burnt more than 51,800 hectares.
  • More than 4500 sheep have been lost. Assessments are continuing.
  • Ten houses have been confirmed lost in addition to sheds, cars and fencing. Assessments are continuing.
  • Approximately 500 people attended relief centres at Horsham, Stawell and Ararat over the past few days.
  • Current resources include 702 personnel, 87 tankers, 30 slip-on vehicles, nine dozers, five fixed wing aircraft and seven helicopters. There are also a number of graders, excavators, tractors and support vehicles on scene.
  • Supplying more than 1500 meals to firefighters per day.
  • The Black Range fire has burnt just over 975 hectares.

Relief centres:

  • Stawell Leisure Centre, 49-51 Houston Street.
  • The Horsham Relief Centre is now closed. A Community Information Point will be open from 10.00am at the Horsham Senior Citizens Centre, Roberts Avenue.

Community meetings:

  • Dadswell’s Bridge Hall, 2.00pm
  • Mural Room Parks Victoria, Halls Gap 6.00pm
Last Updated: 19 January 2014