Huge bushfire destroy Adelaide Hills homes as the threat widens to more Adelaide Hills towns and CFS warn of catastrophic fire danger in the latest South Australian Bushfires.
Updated 8pm Monday 5th January
With 26 homes confirmed as lost to date, and over 60 people injured, the fire continues through the northeastern Adelaide Hills near Kersbrook and Gumeracha in what is the most serious event since the 1983 Ash Wednesday fires.
Over 13,000 hectares have been burnt out in the Adelaide Hills fires and over 700 in Tantaloola in the state’s South East.
All edges of the 236 kilometre circumference of the Sampson Flat Fire in the Adelaide Hills remain active and unpredictable wind gusts mean anyone in the general vicinity of the fire must exercise extreme caution. There remain some serious risks including a strong change in weather conditions on Wednesday.
Currently the Sampson Flat fire has a circumference of 236 kilometres and is threatening townships in Chain of Ponds and the towns of Inglewood, Houghton, Inglewood, Mt Torrens, Williamstown, Charleston, Woodside, Mount Pleasant. Upper Hermitage, Chain of Ponds, Lobethal and Forreston.
According to the Chief Executive of CFS, the fire in the Adelaide Hills still remains very active right through tonight into tomorrow and possibly early stages of next week. The amount of work involved is quite considerable and working hard to secure fire before hot and windy conditions anticipated for Wednesday next week. There’s currently around 600 firefighters fighting the fire and another large contingent of people providing support. Over 100 fire appliances are involved and today they used 14 aircraft including 2 Ericson Aircranes. They’ve also been using specialist observation aircraft and will continue to use them over the next few days to determine the hotspots and observe the fire’s edge. There’s been difficulty this morning to determine the fires due to thick smoke and this has hampered their ability to determine the extent of the fire and closely monitor its actions.
A contingent of firefighters from NSW & VIC have arrived, together with 2 aerial water tankers from VIC which are making a significant impact to the effort from the air.
If you’re in the area, be vigilant to the fire edges as they can flare up and become a threat again.
Police Commissioner Gary Burns has declared the bushfire a major emergency. The declaration — which will remain in force for 14 days — enables authorised officers to utilise a range of powers not normally available to them, such as forced evacuations.
Check for road closures, safe routes, and safe precincts by going to the CFS website, www.cfs.sa.gov.au, or by tuning in to the ABC, 5AA and local radio, or by checking the CFS FireApp and/or the CFS Facebook page for further information. Affected residents or others can also call the Bushfire Information Hotline on 1300 362 361. Remember, it is critical for people to stay informed of the changing conditions throughout the day.
Local residents are slowly being allowed back to their properties with valid proof of residence via identification. Unfortunately looting has started occuring with thieves jumping the cordoned off areas with residents speaking up to Police to tighten the security in the area.
Also be aware that significant smoke and fallen trees could make safe travel difficult and residents should be well aware of their safest exit route. Do not drive into smoke.
Country Fire Service Updates:
Folllow the CFS on Facebook and Twitter (feed below) for the same updates as the website has been struggling at times due to massive demand.
Relief Centres for affected families
SAMPSON FLAT FIRE – Relief Centres
The CFS advises Relief Centres have been opened at Golden Grove Recreation Centre (The Golden Way, Golden Grove) and at Sandy Creek (Willaston Football Club, Murray Street, Gawler.)
Mount Barker Showgrounds, Relief Centre and Food drop off point
Harris Bus Depot, Barkla Road, Evanston has been set up as an evacuation point by a group of local volunteers. They really need food donations, bottled water and people with spare bbqs to help feed people later on for tea.
The City of Playford has opened Ramsay Park in Edinburgh North as a pet-friendly site for those affected by the Sampson Flat Bushfire. Residents and their animals are welcome and must enter the park from Barfield Crescent. It is the owner’s responsibility to take care of their livestock or pet during this time.
Tour Barossa are coordinating emergency accommodation for anyone in need as well as coordinating people. If anyone has any beds available they can contact them on (08) 8563 1000 or message their address, phone number and how many they can accommodate and if pets are welcome too.
If you are a visitor to the Barossa region and have been evacuated due to the bushfires, you can contact Kym Brown from Getaways Reservation Service for assistance with emergency accommodation. Call 0885631000 / 0412121719 for details.
If you have any housing/properties bedding available you could contact Kym to offer your assistance and add your details to the list of available properties.
Pet Boarding Centres:
They have limited capacity for 15 dogs and 20 cats but further small dogs and cats can be accommodated if they arrive in their crates. Please call 8252 1999 to discuss your requirements.
Donations of food for CFS Officers are being requested to Paradise Church, Darley Road. CFS are asking for more water, sugar lollies, Cartons of beer and nut and oat bars. Fresh fruit. If you can help all you have to do is drop them in to perseverance road Tea Tree Gully. Just off North East road. Behind the Tea Tree Gully Hotel.
PLEASE NOTE: Due to overwhelming response of donations, only the following are being taken at this time.
Drop offs for CFS food, water and pet food can be made at all of the above Relief Centres
– single serve hot meals in takeaway containers
– bananas, apples, etc
– sandwiches/rolls made up
– muffins/cake slices
– high protein/energy bars
– bottled water
– animal food, leads, pet toys, water bowls, litter trays, kitty litter
Please sit tight with any household, clothing and toy donations until further information is provided.
Due to the large amount of horses, stock and other animals being relocated during the bushfires, feed is in short supply . Sunday 04/01/2015 from 11am and 2pm the Port Noarlunga Football Club , Britian Drive, Port Noarlunga will become a drop off point for Hay, horse pellets , stock feed, dog and cat food.
Southern Drop off at Katrine Hildyard MP’s Office, Corner or Randell Road, 198 Main SOuth Road Morphett Vale until 11pm tonight and 9.30 – 12.30 Sunday
Several key Facebook groups have been setup to coordinate donations and keep all involved.
Missed anything? Please comment below and we’ll update promptly.
Fingers crossed the fire gets under control soon before any lives are lost!