Fire crews warn of long and volatile season ahead

BATTLING ON: RFS members Jenny Lewis, Kylie Chalker, Steve Gardiner, Ton van der Linden, Jeanette Brinkhuis and Ray Morris were some of the many volunteers fighting bushfires over the weekend.
BATTLING ON: RFS members Jenny Lewis, Kylie Chalker, Steve Gardiner, Ton van der Linden, Jeanette Brinkhuis and Ray Morris were some of the many volunteers fighting bushfires over the weekend. Adam Hourigan

FIRE crews have made a significant dent in the number of blazes burning in the Clarence Valley, as investigations into their cause continue. With the number of fires reduced to 14, volunteers have been able to focus on ensuring that fires remain contained and behind identified containment lines.

A week ago the fire service was faced with 30 individual outbreaks, which burnt close to 10,000 hectares of bushland.

NSW RFS Clarence Valley district manager Superintendent Stuart Watts said a number of out-of-area crews had arrived in the past few days to provide local volunteers a rest.

"As it winds down, local resources will be put back on, but they have jobs and families," he said. "On the field we still have over 150 volunteer firefighters, with support from National Parks and State Forests."

Investigations into the cause of the fires are ongoing.

"My concern is we shouldn't be having this much fire activity so early," Supt Watts said.

"It clearly demonstrates we're in a very dry period.

"There's still an abundance of fuel in a very dry state.

"It doesn't take much fire weather for these materials to burn, so we remind people that permits are suspended."

Moving forward, Supt Watts said last week's fire activity highlighted the need for families to re-assess their own bushfire survival plans and hazard reduction strategies to make communities, properties and families safer.

Plans should be top of mind 24/7, Supt Watts said.

Topics:  bushfires, editors picks, rfs

‘Tireless’ principals paid tribute over new Ballina school

School principals thanked for their role in merger

Masters confirm closure

Masters Hardware Store Springfield Central.

Woolworths confirm the closure of Masters stores

Where to catch all the rally action in Kyogle

Jack Monkhouse puts his car through its paces on the Baileys Bridge Road north of Kyogle ahead of the 2013 Border Ranges Rally this weekend.

The dirt will fly as rally comes to town

Latest deals and offers

What's on the big screen this week

Toby Kebbell and Jack Huston in a scene from the movie Ben-Hur.

AN OLD classic returns to the big screen with a new young star.

Bachelor Richie gives bacon-loving Noni the boot

Noni Janur features on this season of The Bachelor.

TOOWOOMBA swimwear designer still single but focusing on her career.

Zumbo's Just Desserts serves up magical dishes

Gigi Falanga, left, joins hosts Adriano Zumbo and Rachel Khoo on the TV series Zumbo's Just Desserts.

ADRIANO Zumbo’s decadent creations have become prime-time viewing.

Sir Cliff Richard feels 'best' after sex abuse allegations

Sir Cliff Richard is 'back' to his best after sex abuse claims

Blac Chyna sued after car injured 2 women

Blac Chyna is being sued after her friend crashed into another car

Chris Hemsworth surprises kids at hospital as Thor

Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston surprised children at hospital

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep