Tina Haarg with Edward, and Nora at Rappville.
Tina Haarg with Edward, and Nora at Rappville. Marc Stapelberg

58 buildings destroyed in devastating bushfires

UPDATE 10.39am: THE Rural Fire Service is urging motorists to be ‪careful as trees are still falling without notice close to roads.

They are working to make sure access back in to areas affected by the Long Gully Rd and Busbys Flat is safe.

 

UPDATE, 7.25am: NSW Rural Fire Service's Building Impact Assessment teams are continuing their assessment of properties impacted by the bushfires.

>>> 64 heartbreaking photos from bushfire-ravaged village

>>> 'UNCHARTED TERRITORY': Fires burn our rainforests

Crews have today been able to access parts of the Busbys Flat Road fireground, including the village of Rappville, and the Long Gully Road fire.

At this stage, a total of 21 homes have been confirmed destroyed but this number will rise as teams inspect more properties.

Fifteen of these homes have been destroyed in the Rappville area, while a further six have been destroyed at the Long Gully Road fire.

Confirmed property losses, as of late yesterday afternoon:

  • 21 homes destroyed, 4 damaged, 52 saved in the direct area of the fire
  • 2 community facilities including a hall destroyed, 5 damaged
  • 35 outbuildings destroyed, 7 damaged.

At this stage, an estimated 35 percent of the Busbys Road Flat fire area has been assessed, and 20 percent of the area affected by the Long Gully Road fire yesterday.

Teams will continue their assessments tomorrow

Original story: THE Busbys Rd bushfire -- which is believed to have been deliberately lit -- has finally been downgraded to Advice level by the Rural Fire Service.

An update on the RFS website explains that conditions have eased and seen a decrease in fire activity.

But the fire has burned about 40,000 hectares and is still not under control.

"Firefighters and aircraft will continue work to slow the spread of the fire throughout the day," the RFS said.

"Crews will continue backburning operations where possible, and are working to identify broader containment lines.

"Although conditions have eased and more favourable conditions are forecast today, the fire could see an increase in activity so it is important to monitor conditions as there is still active fire burning across the fireground.

"Building Impact Assessment teams have been inspecting damage to properties in the area. A significant number of homes or other buildings have been destroyed, including in the Rappville area."

Advice

If you are in areas to the north of the fire, including Pikapene, Mongogarie, Coombell and Ellangowan, continue to monitor conditions and watch for burning embers which may be blown ahead of the fire.

If you are to the east of the fire in the Bungawalbin area, monitor conditions. Take advice from firefighters working in the area.

If you live in the areas of Busbys Flat, Rappville and Wyan where the fire has been burning, it may not be safe to return to your home. There are numerous dangerous trees and damaged power poles in the area. Roads are closed.

Other information

  • An evacuation centre has been set up at at St Marys Primary School - 120 Centre Street, Casino for people who require assistance. Small domestic animals can be taken to the evacuation centre. Larger animals can be taken to the Casino Showgrounds, Summerland Way.
  • If your life is at risk, call Triple Zero (000) immediately.
  • Continue to stay up to date with the bush fire situation by checking http://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au, listening to your local radio station or by calling the NSW RFS Bush Fire Information Line on 1800 679 737.
  • For information on road closures, check http://livetraffic.rta.nsw.gov.au. Roads may be closed without warning.