News & Media

Hazelwood mine fires - update 23/2

Foam: Two compressed air foam units from ACT Fire & Rescue have arrived to join the Tasmanian Fire Service unit in battling the Hazelwood open cut mine fire.

“The main focus on the fire fight today is the northern batters and using compressed air foam is part of that,” Incident Controller Bob Barry said.

“The interstate crews will be pumping this foam – which has less water in it than normal fire fighting foam – to blanket the fire. A thick layer of foam will stop it spreading and, importantly, it may reduce the amount of smoke affecting Morwell.

“This foam is useful but it won’t solve the problem - it is another tactic to aid us but there is still a long way to go in this fire fight.”

Yesterday, it was announced that a two-day trial of compressed air foam by the Tasmanian Fire Service unit had been successful and would be ramped up as part of operations.

A variety of information sources are available today for concerned locals:

Information points:

  • Moe Town Hall respite centre, Albert Street, 9am - 7pm. For anyone needing a break from the conditions.
  • CFA information bus (which will have representatives from CFA, EPA and Ambulance Victoria) will be roving around the area south of Commercial Road, Morwell in the morning (from 9am). It will be at the Mid Valley shopping centre in Morwell from 3pm until 5:30pm for anyone wanting information about the Hazelwood open cut mine fire.
  • Community Health Assessment Centre, Ambulance Victoria Gippsland Regional Office, 2 Saskia Way in Morwell, next to the Mid-Valley Shopping Centre, 8am – 8pm. Two nurses and two paramedics offer basic health assessments such as blood pressure, heart rate, temperature and basic respiratory checks such as chest sounds and respiratory rate. Anyone needing medical care will be referred to their doctor or Latrobe Regional Hospital.
  • Emergency services and other agency workers will also be doorknocking and walking around areas of most concern in Morwell to provide residents with information on the fire and their health. They’ll be starting in areas south of Commercial Road in the morning and expanding out later in the day (including the Bowls Club on Wallace Street and the RSL on Eglin Street).

People can also get information from:

  • (smoke and health) or NURSE-ON-CALL 1800 60 60 24 (health)
  • or 1300 372 842 or 1300 EPAVIC (for air quality)
  • (for fire information, warnings and advice)
  • and Victorian Bushfire Information Line 1800 247 667 (general information)
  • National Relay Service 1800 555 677 (for callers who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech/communication impairment: general situation).

For more information: CFA ICC Traralgon 5177 3286

Last Updated: 24 February 2014