Chop­pers douse fires

Gatton Star - - Life -

WA­TER bomb­ing air­craft were used aroundWest Hal­don and Hirst­glen to help fire­fight­ers com­bat a large bush­fire.

Fire crews mon­i­tored the blaze be­fore mov­ing in to fight the fire.

A Queens­land Fire and Emer­gency Ser­vices spokes­woman said crews were con­duct­ing prop­erty pro­tec­tion oper­a­tions in the area.

She said wa­ter-bomb­ing oper­a­tions and air sur­veil­lance con­tin­ued through­outWed­nes­day.

Res­i­dents in the area were urged to re­main vig­i­lant and mind­ful of emer­gency ser­vices crews.

The spokes­woman said heavy smoke con­tin­ued to linger in the area and urged mo­torists to avoid the area if pos­si­ble. Fire crews were also work­ing to con­tain two large bush­fires burn­ing to Toowoomba’s north although they were not pos­ing a threat to prop­er­ties. The spokes­woman said the fires near Crows Nest and Ravens­bourne con­tin­ued to burn but wa­ter-bomb­ing oper­a­tions had been can­celled for that area.

“Crews re­turned to the scene and were work­ing to con­tain those fires as well,” she said.

QFES vol­un­teer com­mu­nity ed­u­ca­tors vis­i­tied the up­per Range area, to give in­for­ma­tion to res­i­dents about how they can be pre­pared for bush­fire sea­son.

On Sun­day af­ter­noon the Hirst­glen fire was burn­ing within con­tain­ment lines and was mostly un­der con­trol af­ter 5000ha burned de­spite two weeks of be­ing fought by lo­cal fire crews.

Fire author­i­ties are still in­ves­ti­gat­ing what sparked bush­fires in the re­gion.

PHOTOS: FRAN­CIS WITSENHUYS­EN

AIR AT­TACK: Mul­ti­ple wa­ter bomb­ing he­li­copters help to con­trol a blaze threat­en­ing houses on the Clifton-Gat­ton Rd, Hirst­glen.

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