Region not out of the perfect fire storm yet
WHILE the fire that ravaged up to 1,000 ha of Sunshine Coast near-suburbia since Monday had yesterday been contained, as well as Cooloola's Teewah Beach bush fire, the message is clear that complacency is no Queenslander's friend this week.
The Peregian fire was propelled over bushland by relentless winds, in as high as 70m waves as it shed countless flying embers in its path.
Its guts were only knocked out by a co-ordinated attack by 350 fire-fighters, six fire-bombing helicopters, a jet dropping retardant gel and finally an ease in wind conditions yesterday.
Closer to home, the same ease in condtions helped fire-fighters who were monitoring a bush fire in Cooloola's Teewah Beach, South of Double Island Point near Kings Bore Road, that Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service confirmed was ignited by an abandoned campfire on Sunday.
The Bureau of Meteorology predicts the same reprieve in wind force today, but dangerous fire conditions of a similar nature are predicted to raise a vengeful head again tomorrow and into the weekend.
"Coming through Friday winds are going to start picking up again- we've got a burst in the south westerlies,” BoM forecaster Kimba Wong said.
It may not hit the intensity of those that fuelled the Coast fires, Ms Wong said, but the directional change will up dry and windy conditions.
It will also be coupled with soaring temperatures, that are predicted to reach 30C tomorrow and 29C on Saturday in Gympie.
"Through the Gympie area, warmer, drier and windier conditions will elevate the fire danger on Friday and going into the weekend,” the forecaster said.
Gympie Fire station officer Cameron Nicol said
the current weather's dangerous concoction for fires meant Gympie region residents should follow all fire safety advice.
" It is unprecedented fire conditions for this time of year,” he said.
"This type of weather - given the lack of rainfall, high winds and low humidity is more in line with October and November weather.”
"All the fires that we have had will be monitored - they can flare even days later- with this wind.”
He warned people to be extremely careful if using motorised and electrical equipment outside and to keep fire fighting equipment nearby when doing so.
A complete fire ban is still in place for the Gympie region that includes the following camp sites and national parks:
UNTIL further notice, open fires must not be lit anywhere in the Inskip Peninsula and Cooloola Recreation Areas, including Teewah Beach and Poverty Point campgrounds.
The fire ban also applies to K'gari (Fraser Island), including in fire rings at Dundubara and Waddy Point camping areas.
FIRES are not permitted anywhere within the National Parks or State Forests across the Gympie, Sunshine Coast and Noosa local government areas
This applies to Amamoor State Forest and National Park, Brooyar State Forest, Imbil State Forest, Tuchekoi National Park and Woondum National Park.
THE K'Gari (Fraser Island) Great Walk is closed due to high fire danger while the usual seasonal restriction on the Cooloola Great Walk and the Cooloola Wilderness Trail will be implemented from 30 November to 29 February next year.
Visitors risk penalties if they do not comply with closures, bans and the directions of QPWS rangers.