Around 100 people, including remote area firefighters from NSW, are working on the still-burning Gell River fire in Tasmania’s South-West.
Up to 100 staff from Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service, Tasmania Fire Service, Sustainable Timber Tasmania and private contractors, along with six rotary wing aircraft have been allocated to the fire.
Air operations are being staged from airbases near Bushy Park and Strathgordon.
The remote area firefighters are working in difficult, rugged terrain on the north-east edge of the fire, with 12 firefighters from NSW Rural Fire Service assisting with the fire response.
Some of the hot spots these specialist firefighters are working in are difficult to reach, requiring a four-hour return walk.
They complement the work by remote area teams from Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service and Tasmania Fire Service.
The fire which has burnt about around 20,000 hectares and continues to burn approximately 20 kilometres north-west of Maydena, with its southern around 7 kilometres north of Adamsfield.
Parks and Wildlife Service deputy incident controller Shane Breen said the Incident Management team was monitoring the weather situation and contingencies had been developed for uncontrolled fire outbreaks the possibility of elevated fire weather in the coming days.
“We are confident contingencies that have already been put in place south of the fire to protect important assets are sufficient, should they be required. This involved setting up sprinklers around several huts of historical significance and deploying crews to protect critical communications infrastructure on [Mount] Tim Shea,” Mr Breen said.
“The containment lines that firefighters have worked tirelessly on over the last several days have been successful in holding the fire under [the] very high fire conditions that have been experienced on the fire ground.
“Firefighters continue to identify and extinguish hot spots near the fire edge, however it only takes one ember to land in unburnt vegetation and start a new fire, and that is a real possibility with elevated fire weather,” Mr Breen said.
An Advice alert remains in place for Maydena, Tyenna, Mount Field and National Park.
There is no immediate threat to people living in the area, but Tasmania Fire Service warns conditions could change quickly.
An elevated fire danger caused by stronger winds, low relative humidity and high temperatures is expects in the coming days.
Tasmania Fire Service asks people to:
- Review their bushfire survival plan and decide now what to do if a fire starts nearby
- Make yourself familiar with the Community Protection Plan for your area on TFS Online
- Check for updated messages and alerts on the TFS website regularly
- Listen to ABC Local Radio for Community Alerts and Warnings
- Report any new fires by phoning Triple Zero (000).