Kyabram district hit by two fires in one day

By Jared Prestwidge

KYABRAM and district were hit by two separate fires on Tuesday, January 14, with the CFA urging residents to stay vigilant as summer continues.

A haystack spontaneously combusted at a property on McKenzie Rd, Lancaster.

Firefighters from Kyabram, Merrigum and Tatura responded about 12.15 pm and were able to quickly bring the blaze under control.

Owner Steven Stone said he saw smoke coming up from the stack and immediately called 000.

“A small patch at one end started smoking a little bit and the wind kicked it in pretty quickly,” he said.

“Once it started there wasn't any chance of stopping it.

“Luckily the fire brigade got here relatively quickly.”

CFA District 20 commander Bryan Suckling said residents must continually monitor their haystacks to reduce the chance of combustion.

“The best way to avoid that is choosing the right time when it’s baled and stored, how it’s stored and keeping moisture off the top of it,” he said.

“If you do find a bale that is extremely hot, isolate it from the rest of the hay . . . the chances are if one goes up there might be a few others that’ll go with it.

“The best source of information is off the CFA public website.”

Firefighters were also called to a grass fire at Curr Rd, Kyabram, about 6.20 pm.

The fire was about 100 m wide by 150 m long and was extinguished quickly.

The cause is undetermined; nothing suspicious was found at the point of ignition.

Mr Suckling said despite the recent fire activity, the region could look forward to reasonable weather conditions in the immediate future.

“We are experiencing some more benign conditions at the moment which is a great time for our firefighters to get a break,” he said.

“But until we get decent rain, we need to stay vigilant.”