OUT: Farmers Neil Marshall and Bruce Duncan helped to control the fire near Minerva Mine on Monday morning, November 11.
OUT: Farmers Neil Marshall and Bruce Duncan helped to control the fire near Minerva Mine on Monday morning, November 11.

Neighbouring farmers help bring fire under control

NEIGHBOURING farmers spent their morning extinguishing a fire near Minerva Mine today.

Bruce Duncan arrived about 9am, which he said wasn’t long after the fire had started, and was working to put out the flames alongside the Gregory Hwy.

Other farmers at the site said they thought the fire had spread about 10km inland from the highway and past Minerva Mine.

Neil Marshall and Mr Duncan were two of the many surrounding farmers who spent hours trying to bring the flames under control.

It remains unknown how the fire started, but Mr Marshall said it could have been anything, a bush fire or from a loose chain on machinery.

“I just hope it wasn’t purposely ignited,” he said.

“Getting away from the road sides, there’s not quite as much grass here. Yet cultivation paddocks that get locked up, the grass gets going around it because there’s no cattle or anything to eat the grass down,” Mr Marshall said.

“So there’s always all this dry matter and it makes a good fire.”

The property affected had recently harvested a field of wheat, which Mr Mashall said was extremely lucky.

“They’re fortunate, it could’ve been disastrous for them,” he said.

Although the fire didn’t affect their properties, Mr Marshall and Mr Duncan said there was never any question about helping out in a time of need.

“It might be slightly out of our jurisdiction, but you just hope when you need help, they’ll come too,” Mr Marshall said.

“You’ve only got to ask for help and you’ll get plenty.”

Both men said they had previously faced fires about the area, as well as on their own properties.

Mr Marshall said the last fire was about 12 months ago, which was ignited by a lightning strike.

Fires near Springsure.
Fires near Springsure.

12.20pm: THE grassfire near Springsure is “close to extinguished”, says Emerald Fire Service acting area commander Clive Weeks.

“They’ve got it under control now and it’s looking pretty good,” he said.

“We’ve still got a number of resources there and water tankers.”

It remains unknown how the fire started.

It did not threaten any homes.

10.04am: FIRE services have responded to a fire beside the Gregory Highway near Springsure.

Emerald, Springsure, and Rural Fire Brigades are attending the scene.

Smoke from the blaze.
Smoke from the blaze.