Southern Belle DC-10. By NSW Rural Fire Service.
Southern Belle DC-10. By NSW Rural Fire Service.

Waterbomber battles out-of-control fire on the North Coast

NSW Rural Fire Service has dispatched a Southern Belle DC-10 waterboming plane to try to stop an out-of-control fire south of Evans Head.

A lightening strike caused the bush fire between the coast line and North Gate Rd to start, about 9pm Saturday.  

Part of the area, about 6km south of Evans Head, serves the Royal Australian Air Force as an air weapons range.  

An RFS spokesman said about 15 firefighters are at the scene, but the blaze is largely inaccessible.  

"A large DC10 plane has left Sydney to commence a significant retardant drop on the southern edge of the fire at about 2.30pm (Sunday).  

Fire near Evans Head on Sunday, by Jessica Meldrum.
Fire near Evans Head on Sunday, by Jessica Meldrum.

"People need to be aware the tanker is in the area and it will be flying low and they shouldn't be alarmed by it.

"There is no threat to Evans Head homes at this point in time.

"With where the fire is at the moment, if it gets past a couple of pre-identified control areas, it could burn into a much larger area and could take much longer to extinguish.  

"Then it could become a significant fire.  

"Hence there's a lot of effort being put in this afternoon.  

"When the wind drops this afternoon we can't continue back burning."  

Woodburn resident Samantha Elley said she saw the the fire from her house and "it looked like a huge, big smokey fireball".

"We noticed the smoke coming up and it's been growing and growing all afternoon."

Fire near Evans Head as captured by Von Pyne.
Fire near Evans Head as captured by Von Pyne.


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