Buckra Bendinni fires chew through over 500 hectares

The race is on for fire crews controlling the Kian Rd fire at Buckra Bendinni, 25km west of Bowraville, as hot weather approaches.

Fire crews have been working all weekend in very steep, dry and thickly-vegetated country to protect multiple houses which were under immediate threat.

A total fire ban was issued for last Thursday, October 17, but clearly noone had informed Zeus.

The fire - originally two separate fires - was sparked by last Wednesday evening's lightning storm, and whipped up by strong winds on Thursday.

That storm ignited a dozen fires within the Lower North Coast fire zone.

"Crews attending fires out at Crescent Head said it was one of the worst storms they've ever been in - rain was gushing down and there was lightning striking all around them," Inspector for Lower North Coast RFS Wayne Leader said.

Many of the fires were contained swiftly, but three (including the two in the Valley) continued their path of destruction throughout the weekend.

Over 50 local firefighters across all divisions have been working late into the night since Wednesday evening to control the Kian Rd fire, and the Jacobs Spur fire, east of Kempsey.

On Saturday the fires between Kian Rd and Upper Buckrabendinni Rd were re-classed as one fire to help ease of management.

It has now burned through 538 hectares of bushland.

Ten RFS units and National Parks firefighting crews are currently working on containment lines at the Kian Rd fire, while weather conditions are favourable.

Three helicopters are also water bombing the area.

Insp Leader said the backburning efforts of crews over the weekend went according to plan.

The strategy now is to get containment lines set up well ahead of the next temperature spike which is predicted on Thursday.

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