A long battle ‘part of our job’

FIREFIGHTERS worked for more than 20 hours straight at the weekend to contain fires in the Upper Murray.

Three fires were caused by lightning strikes on Friday; one at Burrowa Pine Mountain near Walwa, burned 1.8 hectares, the others at Mount Lawson State Park, about 20 kilometres north east of Tallangatta, burned less than one hectare.

The fires did not threaten homes or properties.

Thirty firefighters battled the three blazes, supported by two helicopters from Ovens with rappel crews who drop into fire fronts from helicopters.

A Tallangatta unit of nine firefighters worked from 8.30am on Friday to 5am on Saturday.

Because of the remote location, the Tallangatta firefighters had to walk through bush in the dark to the blaze, a task that took them almost two hours, and back again.

“They had an idea where (the fire) was, they walked to the glow in the sky,” DSE Upper Murray incident controller Ron Patterson said.

“They’ve done it pretty rough ... it was almost a 24-hour shift, but that’s part of our job.”

Crews were mopping up yesterday afternoon.