Grass fire requires air support

By Jackson Russell

Three fires late last week had Mitchell Shire fire brigades busy, with a grass fire near Broadford more than 15 acres large requiring air support and a house in Seymour burning down.

A helicopter and 10 tankers were required to bring a grass fire under control at McKenzies Lane in Sugarloaf Creek on Thursday afternoon.

Initial calls for the fire, estimated to be between 15 and 20 acres in size by the time units arrived, were received at about 2.15pm, with the fire brought under control close to an hour after it was attended.

The cause of the fire is still being investigated.

A house in Kitchener Crescent, Seymour burned down after a fire late Sunday night, with the home fully engulfed by the time crews arrived.

Four appliances attended the fire at about 10.50pm. Crews brought it under control 40 minutes later.

Fire investigators were at the scene on Monday to conduct initial investigations.

Seymour Police said injuries were highly unlikely as the resident was believed to have left prior to the fire.

The fire is not being treated as suspicious and the Mitchell Crime Investigation Unit’s investigation is ongoing.

There was a small grass fire at Old Mill Road, Bylands between Arkells Lane and Union Lane just before 5pm on Sunday.

Six tankers from Wallan, Wandong and Kilmore were able to get the fire under control within 15 minutes.

CFA District 12 commander Charlie Cleary said the fires served as a warning for Mitchell Shire residents at the start of the annual fire danger period.

“The grass is growing out and I think, particularly in Mitchell Shire, people really have to be careful when they’re out operating machinery in the grass or cropped areas,” he said.

“With the wind conditions and warmer area, it doesn’t take much for a fire to start. Especially if there’s any overheating or failure in the machinery.

“I heard about a whipper snipper starting a grass fire when it hit a rock recently, so it doesn’t take much for it to spark something and get going.

“Now is an ideal time for people to make sure they’re meeting their fire danger period obligations and that advice is available on the CFA website.”