Bushfire threatens Kurri hospital, spreads to Pelaw Main

Blaze close to homes: photos A Police Officer watches on a fire off Leggetts Drive Pelaw Main. Picture: Simone De Peak
杭州龙凤

A helicopter picking up water near Leggetts Drive Pelaw Main. Picture: Simone De Peak

Firefighters attending the a fire off Leggetts Drive Pelaw Main. Picture: Simone De Peak

Firefighters attending the aftermath of a fire of Leggetts Drive Pelaw Main. Picture: Simone De Peak

A Firefighter talking to residents in Leggetts Drive Pelaw Main. Picture Simone De Peak

People watch on the fire near Pelaw Main. Picture: Simone De Peak

Emergency service in Leggetts Drive Pelaw Main whish is closed due to fire. Picture: Simone De Peak

Smoke from the bushfire near Kurri Kurri hospital on Sunday. Photo: Nic Holstein

Smoke from the bushfire near Kurri Kurri hospital on Sunday. Photo: Nic Holstein

Smoke from the bushfire near Kurri Kurri hospital on Sunday. Photo: Nic Holstein

Smoke from the bushfire near Kurri Kurri hospital on Sunday. Photo: Nic Holstein

Picture Dave Bean

Picture Dave Bean

Picture Dave Bean

Picture Dave Bean

Picture Dave Bean

Picture Dave Bean

Picture: Dave Bean

Picture: Dave Bean

Picture Samantha Burns

Picture Samantha Burns

Picture Samantha Burns

Picture Samantha Burns

Picture Samantha Burns

Picture Samantha Burns

TweetFacebook Kurri Kurri Fire EDITORIAL: Beware bushfire season

BUSHFIRE threatened houses at Pelaw Main on Sunday and created a massive pall of smoke over the Hunter.

The fire was out of control for hours, but firefighters contained it in the evening.

Southwesterly to westerly winds pushed smoke across the Newcastle skyline, which could be seen from as far away as the Central Coast.

The fire was initially reported as only five hectares, but by night 282 hectares had burnt.

Rural Fire Service Inspector Ben Shepherd said the fire had ‘‘run close to homes’’ in Wallsend and Neath streets.

‘‘There was some concern it may push towards homes, but it dissipated as it ran past them,’’ Inspector Shepherd said.

Pelaw Main resident Nandina Vines said there was ‘‘a bit of panic’’ among residents, especially her and a neighbour who had to evacuate their eight horses.

‘‘The firies did a great job – the people of Pelaw Main owe them a big thank you,’’ Ms Vines said.

The fire burnt within the Hunter Economic Zone – land thick with bush and earmarked for a controversial industrial estate.

Inspector Shepherd attributed the copious smoke to the type of vegetation being burnt.

‘‘It’s paperbark and heath country – it burns hot,’’ he said.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

Temperatures in the area were in the low- to mid-20s throughout the day, but Inspector Shepherd said ‘‘it doesn’t have to be hot for there to be fires’’ and he warned against complacency. ‘‘If you live close to bush, you must prepare your home and have a bushfire survival plan.’’

In another bushfire, about 1000 hectares was burnt at Swan Bay in Port Stephens.

Lower Hunter Fire Control Centre community safety officer Bert Pipan said firefighters were ‘‘working on containment lines’’ on Sunday night.

MORE than 40 Rural Fire Service firefighters are battling a bushfire near Kurri Kurri.

The blaze started near Hospital Road on Sunday afternoon and has crossed Leggetts Drive, which has been closed to traffic.

It could soon threaten John Renshaw Drive.

Water bombing helicoptersand ground crews are working together to control the fire, which was listed as a Watch and Act at 1.30pm.

Firefighters have positioned themselves on Greta Street, Hebburn Street and Wallsend Street as a precaution.

More to come


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