WILD: A month-long fire in the Lockyer Valley has been blazing for weeks.
WILD: A month-long fire in the Lockyer Valley has been blazing for weeks. Ebony Graveur

Lightning strike sparks month-long, out-of-control blaze

WHAT began as a lightning strike is now a month-long, out-of-control fire threatening small towns in the Lockyer Valley.

The latest alert has Thornton residents evacuating, as crews struggle to bring the Glen Rock National Park fire under control.

West Moreton Chief Fire Warden and Area Director Paul Storrs said the fire began last month at Point Pure, near Goomburra National Park.

READ MORE: LEAVE NOW: Thornton properties under threat from bushfire

He said a lightning strike on September 19, has burned through more than 5,700 hectares.

Firefighters are yet to bring the blaze under control.

"Because of the weather and fuel conditions, it's never been contained," Mr Storrs said.

 

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"The fuel is so dry and the fire is burning through gullies that would normally pull it up - we are just struggling to pull it up."

The fire has been working through mostly national parks, and due to the rocky and jagged terrain, has been difficult for fire fighters to contain.

"It's very difficult terrain to get to, very steep country and, because of the drought conditions, it's burning in a rainforest," Mr Storrs said.

The fire has since spread onto private land and had burned through 5,700 hectares as of yesterday.

"It started to move onto private land about four or five days ago and the rural fire service became engaged and took over as the incident control," Mr Storrs said.

"We're putting every effort we can into containing this fire but, because of the dry conditions, it's going to be very hard."

Crews are undertaking protection work near structures and have engaged landholders in the affected areas.

Mr Storrs said "significant assets" were working in the area.

The fire is moving in two directions, both north-west and south-east.

"We are working on four separate sectors of this fire," Mr Storrs said.

"Abbots sector, which is on the western side, then you've got Mount Phillips in the middle, Cole Gully and Spicers."

The Mount Sylvia State School grounds have transformed into a hub for the crews to operate from.

"We are set up here for the community so they can pop in, have a yarn with us and find out what's going on," Mr Storrs said.

"We're getting connections with our local people every day - they're popping in, having a yarn."