Costs from Sherwood fire mounting
Damage assessors have submitted reports from the losses of Saturday's fire at Sherwood, with primary estimates reaching approximately $2 million.
That figure expected to rise as replacement costs come to hand.
Inspectors said the losses from the fire currently stood at:
- Six houses
- Six farming sheds
- Three haysheds
- Six vehicles
- More than 250 cattle and several thousand sheep
- 4,000 Olive trees
- Associated farming infrastructure and productive land
At 1:13pm on Saturday 6 January 2018, the CFS received a phone call reporting what was believed to be smoke sighted near Dark Island Well and Emu Flat Roads.
Three minutes later the caller rang back to confirm there was a fire.
Within 10 minutes 10 CFS appliances were called to the scene.
The Keith brigade of CFS volunteers crewed their first tanker and departed just four minutes and twenty seconds after the first alert was sent out.
Over the next 14 hours, 36 CFS fire appliances, DEWNR appliances, seven aircraft, multiple farm firefighting units and more than CFS 150 volunteers worked to contain the raging fire.
In total more than 11,675 hectares were burned in the Sherwood fire, with the fire ground's total boundary running 77.1 kilometres.
"For a fire that ignited under catastrophic conditions, the courage displayed by CFS, DEWNR and farm firefighting units was exceptional," CFS State Duty Commander Nik Stanley said.
"Any kind of property loss to a community is heartbreaking. To have zero human fatalities in such conditions was a testament to the firefighting skills, training and practical application from our crews and the actions from within the community," Mr Stanley said.
Region 5 Regional Commander John Probert said, considering the fire tore through more than 20 properties, things could have been much worse.
"Our crews arrived at one house where the flames had burned so close that the curtains in the windows had started to brown," Mr Probert said.
Crews were also able to save the Master Butchers Co-Operative factory, which employees 40 local staff.
Mr Probert said the limiting of damages was a credit to the seamless work of crews from different areas and departments all working together under extreme pressure.
"Now that the fires have been extinguished, the CFS and supporting agencies across the state will stand by the Sherwood area, continue to serve and remain an integral part of the local community," State Duty Commander Nik Stanley said.