'Significant' grass fire was warning

Published 3:00pm 4 October 2023

'Significant'  grass fire was warning
Words by Nick Crockford

The scorched ground visible at Rocksberg. Picture: Queensland Fire and Emergency Services

Monday’s bushfire at Rocksberg was a warning to residents of the dangers we face this summer.

Matt Poor, a Rural Fire Service Officer based at Caboolture, said the "significant" grass fire burnt around 40 acres (16 hectares).

The area off McNamara Rd, which has rural properties, was inaccessible to firefighters who had to call in two waterbombing aircraft.

Thirteen QFES ground crews worked with the fixed-wing planes to stop the fire reaching any buildings.

'Significant'  grass fire was warning
A Pumicestone Rural Fire Brigade picture showing the burnt land at Rocksberg.

It was “contained” in just under three hours and firefighters returned yesterday, patrolling the area using Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).

Crews included volunteers from the rural fire brigades at Rocksberg, Moorina, Narangba, Wamuran, Toorbul and Pumicestone.

“That fire was no surprise at all,” Officer Poor said, “it was a warning sign.

“The wet conditions we’ve had over the last three years have created the right environment (for such a fire).

“The whole of this region is a concern. Anywhere you have grass fields and open canopy with grass underneath."

'Significant'  grass fire was warning
Smoke rising from the fire at Rocksberg. Picture: Queensland Fire and Emergency Services

Officer Poor said firefighters will continue to work, when conditions allow, on reducing the risks and potential impacts of fires.

However, today’s rain will have little impact he said, other than give firefighters a chance to rest after a busy fortnight.

Officer Poor said it is important to know what steps to take in the event of a fire, starting with calling 000 if you see smoke or fire.

  • Review and update your Bushfire Survival Plan
  • Remove hazards and flammable materials from your property that may connect to your home
  • Regularly mow your lawn
  • Trim overhanging branches near your house
  • Clear gutters and roof of leaves, twigs, bark and other debris
  • Ensure your home and contents policy is up to date to ensure you are protected in the event of a bushfire impacting your home
  • Ensure your house number is clearly displayed
  • In rural areas, ensure there is adequate space for fire trucks to access your home (at least four metres wide and high with turn-around area)

Click here for QFES guide on how to prepare for bushfire season.

'Significant'  grass fire was warning


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