Caravan fire spreads to Oakford

Caravan fire spreads to Oakford

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The bush went up quickly after a caravan caught on fire. Photograph – Main Roads WA.

Properties in Oakford came under threat from a bushfire on Easter Sunday.

The bushfire began beside the Tonkin Highway between Rowley Rd and Thomas Rd when a caravan caught on fire just after 4pm.

The fire quickly spread to neighbouring grassland when the driver pulled into the emergency lane.

DFES issued a watch and act alert for the area between Thomas, Kargotich, Rowley Rds and the Tonkin Highway.

The affected parts of the Tonkin Highway and Thomas Rd were closed while over 50 firefighters and air support craft combatted the blaze.

By 5pm the fire was burning out of control.

Strong winds fanned the fast-spreading flames, and a separate alert was issued when the fire spotted north east across the highway into Hilbert, coming within metres of nearby homes.

Thankfully, the fire was brought under control just before sunset after a massive effort from all involved.

Grateful property owners thanked emergency services for their work.

“Thanks for saving our property – you firemen/women are legends,” Debbie Harrison said.

“Thank you firies! Awesome work, the water bombers kept flying over us, it was incredible watching them dump the water. You are all amazing,” Joanna Turnor said.

In related news, prohibited burning periods for all metro local governments, except Shire of Chittering, have been extended due to seasonal conditions.

This means landowners and local governments will not be able to undertake planned burning until 14 April, two weeks later than originally scheduled.

Campfires, solid fuel barbecues, spit roasts, webers, pizza ovens and other cooking fires are prohibited.

Stubble burning, waste management and fuel load reductions are also banned until the prohibited burning period lifts.

This past fortnight has seen three large-scale incidents, besides the Oakford blaze.

The dangerous bushfire weather is forecast to continue for the rest of Autumn.