A fire is burning near Whiporie and has closed the Summerland Way.
A fire is burning near Whiporie and has closed the Summerland Way. Brian Tarlington

Firies ask motorists to heed road warnings

UPDATE 11.30am: EFFORTS to contain a bushfire near Whiporie are progressing with firies on track to contain the blaze.

RFS operations officer, Inspector Daniel Ainsworth said the 1134ha blaze is being controlled with back burning around the fire completed.

Another bulk water tanker carrying 19 000L of water has been deployed to the scene.

Road signage is still in place with RFS and State Forests urging motorists to heed the warnings.

At this stage, closure of the highway is unlikely unless any significant fire activity breaks out in the afternoon.

 

UPDATE 8.45am: MILDER weather today is hoped to give fire fighters the upper hand in controlling an out-of-control blaze near Whiporie.

Thirty Rural Fire Service and State Forrest crews are battling to contain the 362ha bushfire that sparked late yesterday afternoon in "erratic fire conditions", RFS operations officer, Inspector Daniel Ainsworth said.

Insp Ainsworth said cooler conditions will give crews "a better chance to get around the fire" by setting control lines.

Signs have been erected on Summerland Way  to warn motorists of the nearby inferno.

Insp Ainsworth said closures may be reinstated if smoke blows toward the hwy.

Two RFS strike teams from out of area have flown in to assist local crews.

 

THURSDAY 8am: THE Transport Management Centre has advised that the Summerland Way was reopened just after 11pm last night.

The Centre was still advising motorists to be careful as the smoke could still cause some visibility concerns last night.

 

WEDNESDAY 6.54pm: NSW RFS are being kept busy again.

A fire is currently burning in Pine Forest just to the North of Whiporie and adjacent to the Summerland Way.

There is no threat to private property at this time.

According to RFS spokesperson Boyd Townsend, the fire is burning very intensely under the influence of erratic winds.

"It is very visible from up to 80 kilometres away," he said.

Forestry Corporation and the NSW Rural Fire Service are currently battling this blaze in an attempt to maintain the fire to the East of the Summerland Way.

They are being assisted by four water bombing aircraft.

In addition the DC10 has been dispatched to support fire fights on the ground. 

Summerland Way is currently closed and traffic is being diverted at Casino and Grafton.

Motorists should use the Pacific Highway.


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