“After two long months” North Black Range fire near Braidwood extinguished

Michael Weaver 31 January 2020 23
The North Black Range fire

The North Black Range fire west of Braidwood on 1 December. Photo: Michael Weaver, Region Media.

It destroyed five houses and disrupted people’s lives, but the North Black Range fire that cut off roads including the Kings Highway and burned through almost 40,000 hectares has been extinguished, according to the NSW Rural Fire Service.

The bushfire started in Tallaganda National Park from a suspected lightning strike on November 26 and came within a few kilometres of Braidwood three days later. It also threatened outlying communities such as Majors Creek and burnt through Bombay, where one house was lost. It also closed the Araluen Road between Braidwood and Moruya.

As the fire spread through 38,486 hectares, the firefighting efforts impacted the water supplies in Braidwood, with the town elevated to Level 4 water restrictions on 10 January.

The fire was contained on the morning of January 2 and listed as ‘patrol’ on January 8.

It was officially extinguished at 12 pm on Tuesday, January 28, and has now been removed from the NSW RFS map.

Firefighters from across NSW and Victoria were involved in fighting the fire, along with an army of volunteers known as ‘the mozzie squads’ who relentlessly carried out firefighting and property protection.

Darren Marks, of the NSW RFS’s Lake George Zone, said firefighters have spent 20 days performing regular patrols to ensure there were no hot spots remaining.

“After two long months, the North Black Range fire has officially been listed as out,” Mr Marks said.

“We wish to extend a big thank you to our volunteer firefighters and the local community for all your help over the last two months. We couldn’t have done it without you.”

Meanwhile, ACT Emergency Services Agency (ESA) said yesterday (30 January), the Beard Fire, which started on 22 January and spread towards Oaks Estate, has now been extinguished.

The ESA said it will continue to monitor the area over the coming days, where a very high and severe fire danger rating are in place on Friday and Saturday respectively.

Another fire situated to the west of the ACT border, the Mary’s Hill fire, has also been extinguished, according to the ACT Emergency Services Agency.

The Green Wattle Creek fire, which has burnt through over 278,700 hectares in the Wollondilly area south-west of Sydney and claimed the lives of two NSW RFS volunteers, has been contained.

“Since this fire started on the 27 November 2019, it has been challenging, burning through some very difficult terrain, destroying property and tragically seeing the loss of life,” a NSW RFS spokesperson said.

Geoffrey Keaton, 32, and Andrew O’Dwyer, 36, died on December 19, when a “widow-maker” gum tree fell on the cab of their fire truck.

“It is a huge achievement to reach containment tonight. Thank you to all those who have worked so hard for months to get to this point,” the spokesperson said.

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23 Responses to “After two long months” North Black Range fire near Braidwood extinguished
Judy-Ann Emberson Judy-Ann Emberson 5:07 am 03 Feb 20

How??? By Firebreaks????

Alison Hartigan Alison Hartigan 6:34 am 02 Feb 20

Great work and thanks to all involved with the effort x

Matthew Blatchford Matthew Blatchford 4:59 pm 01 Feb 20

This 33000 hectares is growing more with this heat and will be unpredictable come tomorrow morning or afternoon if the server storm comes through.

Cheryl King Cheryl King 2:11 pm 01 Feb 20

That is great news and a fantastic job by all involved to get it extinguished, thank you 🙏

Kathy Humphrey Kathy Humphrey 8:58 am 01 Feb 20

Well done firies. Thanks for all you do.

Shane Townsend Shane Townsend 10:58 pm 31 Jan 20

Poured a lot of sweat into that place 👍

Xavier Davis Xavier Davis 7:41 pm 31 Jan 20

Peter Somerville you probably meant this. Note that it's 40000ha and Namadgi is already at 20000ha

    Peter Somerville Peter Somerville 6:34 pm 01 Feb 20

    Xavier Davis yep this was it 😬😬😬

    Xavier Davis Xavier Davis 7:48 pm 01 Feb 20

    Peter Somerville Namadgi is now 50000ha ...

Mary Smith Mary Smith 2:13 pm 31 Jan 20

Great work by RFS and SES!

Rick Reeks Rick Reeks 1:34 pm 31 Jan 20

And about time!

Elizabeth Rocholl Elizabeth Rocholl 12:23 pm 31 Jan 20

Good job 🌺🌺🌺

Tania-Lee Tay Williams Tania-Lee Tay Williams 12:07 pm 31 Jan 20

Alexander doesn't this just make you happy.

Was very scary

Denise Wilson Denise Wilson 11:01 am 31 Jan 20

Thank you to all the SES, RFS and those volunteering which finally achieving this outcome . . 👏👏👏

Desiree Addinsall Desiree Addinsall 11:01 am 31 Jan 20

Yeah! Bravo you brave souls x thank you!!!! Great job!!

Alan Ireland Alan Ireland 10:23 am 31 Jan 20

Make sure

Sue Elliott Sue Elliott 10:19 am 31 Jan 20

Fantastic news. Great work by the SES and others. Can't believe it is only just out.... came back from the coast the day after it started!

Peter Marshall Peter Marshall 10:11 am 31 Jan 20

I attended a re-ignition on Wednesday afternoon...

Gaynor Thompson Gaynor Thompson 9:58 am 31 Jan 20

Awesome work to everybody working so hard to keep everyone safe while trying to control this fire 👍👏

Mark Titley Mark Titley 9:32 am 31 Jan 20

Awesome work

Dale Wheatley Dale Wheatley 9:28 am 31 Jan 20


Aldith Graves Aldith Graves 9:27 am 31 Jan 20

Thanks to all the firies

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