Firefighters battle the Pechey Fire on Day 8 of the blaze.
Firefighters battle the Pechey Fire on Day 8 of the blaze. Kevin Farmer

AS IT HAPPENED: Homes destroyed, fire continues to burn

TUESDAY, 2.30PM: The Queensland Fire and Emergency Services have reissued a prepare to leave alert for Ravensbourne.

"Currently as at 2pm, a slow-moving bushfire has crossed over Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road," QFES said.

"The fire, which is burning in inaccessible terrain, is travelling in a southerly direction towards Buaraba Creek.

"QFES crews will be monitoring and blackening out along Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road. Aircraft will assist with waterbombing and fire observation throughout the day."

Firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.

An evacuation centre is open today at Highfields Recreation Centre, O'Brien Road, Highfields.

QFES confirmed Esk Hampton Road is only open to local traffic between the New England Highway at Hampton and Esk.

Esk Hampton Road is closed to all traffic between Horrex Road and Brennan Road at Ravensbourne.

The previous prepare to leave notice for Cressbrook Creek and Crows Nest (see below) remains in place.

An evacuation centre for those in that area is in operation at the Crows Nest Showgrounds.

The Toowoomba Regional Council said due to the continuous bushfire conditions, the Crows News Library, Crows Nest Pool, Crows Nest Art Gallery and Ravensbourne Waste Facility remained closed today.

TUESDAY, 10AM: At least one home was destroyed near Crows Nest and several more are believed to have been damaged because of the large fire that has been burning in the area for over a week.

Footage from an ABC Brisbane helicopter revealed the extensive damage to a property this morning.

Toowoomba Mayor Paul Antonio said he had been receiving briefings this morning from QFES' south western region acting assistant commissioner Darryl King.

"It's a very difficult circumstance," Cr Antonio said.

"There is a very high level of very combustible material spread right across the region coupled with changing conditions."

Cr Antonio said 14,000ha of land had been burned by this morning.

The area impacted by the Pechey fire at 9am on November 19.
The area impacted by the Pechey fire at 9am on November 19. QFES

"Over 30 appliances and 150 people are currently working on fire," he said.

"The fire has moved across Esk Hampton Rd due to tree falling across the road and is slowly moving into the Ravensbourne National Park area.

"QPWS is conducting hazard assessments of further trees along the Esk Hampton Rd.

"The eastern side of the fire is still burning slowly in inaccessible land.

Cr Antonio said the priority for council this morning was to reconnect the power to the Cressbrook Dam pump. 

Helicopter vision shared via the ABC showed a burnt-out home near Crows Nest.
Helicopter vision shared via the ABC showed a burnt-out home near Crows Nest. ABC Brisbane

Current warnings:

PREPARE TO LEAVE: Ravensbourne (part of the Pechey fire) bushfire as at 9.25am 

Currently as at 9.25am, Tuesday November 19, a slow-moving bushfire has spotted over Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road. The fire, which is burning in inaccessible terrain, is travelling in a southerly direction towards Buaraba Creek.

QFES crews will be monitoring and blackening out along Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road. Aircraft will assist with waterbombing and fire observation throughout the day.

Firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.

An evacuation centre is open today at Highfields Recreation Centre, O'Brien Road, Highfields.

Esk Hampton Road is only open to local traffic between the New England Highway at Hampton and Esk. Esk Hampton Road is closed to all traffic between Horrex Road and Brennan Road at Ravensbourne. For more information and for updates visit: https://qldtraffic.qld.gov.au/ 

Esk Hampton Rd has been closed to everyone but residents because of the fire.
Esk Hampton Rd has been closed to everyone but residents because of the fire. Tara Miko

PREPARE TO LEAVE: Cressbrook Creek and Crows Nest (part of Pechey fire) bushfire as at 9.30am 

Currently as at 9.30am, Tuesday, November 19, an unpredictable fire continues to burn between Ravensbourne and the outskirts of Crows Nest.

This prepare to leave message is for residents north-west of Perseverance Dam Road including Tin Mine Road, Cressbrook Dam, Perseverance Dam Road, Sebastapool Road, Three Mile Road, Dahl Road, Creek Street, Dale Street North and South, Jones Street, Church Road, Esk Street, William Street, Charles Street, Albert Street, South Street, Blinco Road, Orchard Road, Pinnell Road, Grapetree Road, Dingo Road and surrounding streets. The fire may impact these areas.

Throughout the day, firefighters, with the assistance of heavy machinery, will continue to work on fire breaks from Back Creek Road along Crows Nest Creek, down to Perseverance Dam Road East to the New England Highway. Waterbombing aircraft will conduct operations on scene throughout the day.

Fire crews are working to contain the fire but firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.
Backburning has been successfully completed along Sebastapool Road and Powerline Road to Williams Road. Conditions permitting, additional backburning will be used to strengthen containment lines around the fire today.

An evacuation centre is open at the Crows Nest Showgrounds, New England Highway near Showgrounds Terrace.

People in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.

TUESDAY, 7.45AM: The Bureau of Meteorology says the weather should be on the side of firefighters this morning, as a large and unpredictable blaze continues to burn near Crows Nest.

Meteorologist Dean Narramore said there would be light to moderate north to north westerly winds this morning.

"They'll be quite light during the late morning and early afternoon," Mr Narramore said.

"That's good for trying to get a handle on the fires going at the moment.

"In the late afternoon and into the evening it'll start to pick up, north to north easterly, about 15-20km/hr, with gusts a bit higher along the range."

He said temperatures would reach a top of 32 to 33 degrees today in Toowoomba and along the range, with mid to high 30s forecast for the inland parts of the Darling Downs.  

Two prepare to leave notices remain in place for Cressbrook Creek and Crows Nest, and Ravensbourne.

Warnings as of 7am:

PREPARE TO LEAVE: Cressbrook Creek and Crows Nest (part of Pechey fire) bushfire as at 7.05am Tues

Currently as at 7.05am Tuesday 19 November, an unpredictable fire continues to burn between Ravensbourne and the outskirts of Crows Nest. 

This prepare to leave message is for residents north-west of Perseverance Dam Road including Tin Mine Road, Cressbrook Dam, Perseverance Dam Road, Sebastapool Road, Three Mile Road, Dahl Road, Creek Street, Dale Street North and South, Jones Street, Church Road, Esk Street, William Street, Charles Street, Albert Street, South Street, Blinco Road, Orchard Road, Pinnell Road, Grapetree Road, Dingo Road and surrounding streets. The fire may impact these areas.

Throughout the day, firefighters, with the assistance of heavy machinery, will continue to work on fire breaks from Back Creek Road along Crows Nest Creek, down to Perseverance Dam Road East to the New England Highway.

Fire crews are working to contain the fire but firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.

Backburning has been successfully completed along Sebastapool Road and Powerline Road to Williams Road. Conditions permitting, additional backburning will be used to strengthen containment lines around the fire today.

Residents who have previously evacuated the area south-east of Crows Nest are now able to return to their homes.

An evacuation centre is open at the Crows Nest Showgrounds, New England Highway near Showgrounds Terrace.

PREPARE TO LEAVE: Ravensbourne (part of the Pechey fire) bushfire as at 7am Tues

Currently as at 7am Tuesday 19 November, a slow-moving bushfire has spotted over Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road. The fire, which is burning in inaccessible terrain, is travelling in southerly direction towards Buaraba Creek.

QFES crews will be monitoring and blackening out along Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road. Aircraft will assist with waterbombing and fire observation throughout the day.

TUESDAY, 6.15AM: An unpredictable fire is continuing to burn on the outskirts of Crows Nest, the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services has warned.

Prepare to leave warnings remain in place for Cressbrook Creek, parts of Crows Nest and Ravensbourne.

Crows Nest State School will remain closed today, though Esk State School, which was closed yesterday, will reopen.

In a post on Facebook the Hampton Rural Fire Brigade said progress had been made fighting the fire overnight.

"The night was kind to us," the post said.

"Unfortunately for Ravensbourne, the bushfire has spotted over Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road.

"The fire is burning in inaccessible country and is travelling south towards Greenbank Creek."

The fire, which originated in Pechey one week ago, has burned at least 14,000 hectares.

Several homes are feared lost because of the blaze, though a Queensland Fire and Emergency Services spokeswoman said the organisation wasn't able to confirm the losses. 

She said residents needed to remain "very aware" throughout the day as the fires continued to burn. 

Warnings as of 6.15am:

PREPARE TO LEAVE: Cressbrook Creek and Crows Nest (part of Pechey fire) bushfire as at 5am

Level: Watch and Act

Currently as at 5am Tuesday, November 19, an unpredictable fire continues to burn between Ravensbourne and the outskirts of Crows Nest.

This prepare to leave message is for residents north-west of Perseverance Dam Road including Tin Mine Road, Cressbrook Dam, Perseverance Dam Road, Sebastapool Road, Three Mile Road, Dahl Road, Creek Street, Dale Street North and South, Jones Street, Church Road, Esk Street, William Street, Charles Street, Albert Street, South Street, Blinco Road, Orchard Road, Pinnell Road, Grapetree Road, Dingo Road and surrounding streets. The fire may impact these areas.

Fire crews are working to contain the fire but firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.
Backburning has been successfully completed along Sebastapool Road and Powerline Road to Williams Road. Conditions permitting, additional backburning will be used to strengthen containment lines around the fire today.

Residents who have previously evacuated the area south-east of Crows Nest are now able to return to their homes.

An evacuation centre is open at the Crows Nest Showgrounds, New England Highway near Showgrounds Terrace.

PREPARE TO LEAVE: Ravensbourne (part of the Pechey fire) bushfire as at 5.10am, Tuesday

Level: Watch and Act

Currently as at 5.10am Tuesday, November 19, a slow-moving bushfire has spotted over Esk Hampton Road between Horrex Road and Brennan Road. The fire, which is burning in inaccessible terrain, is travelling in southerly direction towards Greenbank Creek.

QFES crews will be patrolling the area throughout the day and strengthening containment lines.

Firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.

People in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.

STAY INFORMED: Redbank Creek (part of the Pechey fire) as at 10.40pm, Monday

Level: Advice

Currently as at 10.40pm, Monday, November 18, a fire continues to burn in the Deongwar State Forest and Redbank Creek areas.

Fire crews will patrol the areas throughout the night. People in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.

Properties are not under direct threat at this time. Call Triple Zero (000) immediately if you believe you or your property is under threat.



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