13 February 2023

Cottage, stock destroyed as winds fanned grassfires at Nerrangullen and Breadalbane

| Katrina Condie
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Fire near Wee Jasper

RFS crews brought a grassfire near Wee Jasper under control on Sunday afternoon. Photo: Bowning RFS.

An uninhabited cottage was destroyed and stock had to be euthanased when an out-of-control fire burnt through more than 2000 hectares of bush and grassland near Nerrangullen over the weekend.

The New South Wales Rural Fire Service (RFS) was alerted to the blaze when smoke was spotted near Wee Jasper Road about 23 kilometres south west of Yass on Saturday afternoon.

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Authorities believe the fire, south of Burrinjuck Dam, started from a lightning strike in the days prior and was fanned towards Mountain Creek Road and the Murrumbidgee River by hot westerly winds.

ACT firefighters joined RFS crews from around the region to respond and, despite testing conditions, the fire was brought under control by Sunday evening.

Ground crews were supported by two water-bombing aircraft and heavy machinery.

Smoke could be seen from as far away as Canberra, and Wee Jasper Road at the Good Hope and Mountain Creek intersections was closed to the public due to the fire burning on both sides of the road.

Manton RFS crews were also kept busy over the weekend, working on the Nerrangullen blaze as well as a fire on Old South Road at Breadalbane on Saturday which was quickly brought under control with the assistance of air crews.

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On Sunday morning volunteers were called out again, this time after a car and caravan rolled over on the Barton Highway, closing the southbound lane just past Yass Valley Way. B-doubles were forced to park until the crash site was cleared.

According to the RFS, more than 300 firefighters, 15 aircraft and heavy machinery worked on 31 bush and grass fires across the state over the weekend, including five that were out of control. Five fires are yet to be contained.

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