Grass and scrub fire forces closure of Lismore airport
A GRASS and scrub fire forced the closure of Lismore airport on Saturday night and the diversion of a flight yesterday morning.
Rural Fire Service Northern Rivers operation controller inspector Daniel Ainsworth said reports of the fire along the western side of the runway near Caniaba Rd came in at about 7pm Saturday.
Insp Ainsworth said thick smoke from the blaze forced the closure of the airport and then the passenger terminal.
Passengers waiting for a flight to Sydney at about 8pm were forced to make alternate arrangements.
Insp Ainsworth said RFS brigades from Caniaba, Tomki, Wyrallah and Tuncester plus three NSW Fire and Rescue pumpers from Lismore and Goonellabah worked for two-and-a-half hours to bring the fire under control.
The blaze burned about 4 hectares of grass and scrub along Caniaba Rd.
A REX flight due into Lismore at 8am yesterday was delayed due to the airport closure and other operational issues before it was diverted to Ballina airport and the passengers were transported by bus to Lismore.
Insp Ainsworth said the airport had reopened yesterday and RFS brigades were patrolling the area around the airport.