Ashley residents in safe hands after electrical storm ignites grass fires

The aftermath of the grass fires in Ashley. Photo: Michael Ivanov.
The aftermath of the grass fires in Ashley. Photo: Michael Ivanov.

Ashley’s residents have commended the swift efforts of the local Rural Fire Service members after an electrical storm cause spontaneous fires on Wednesday evening.

Local resident Michael Ivanov said the storm brewed over Ashley around 10pm and by 10.30pm two fires had started about a kilometre north of town.

“We were just sitting there watching the storm and within two seconds both fires started about a mile apart from each other. I thought the rain might start and put them out but we had to ring the firies,” he said.

Three Ashley RFS members were called to the fires at 10.30pm and were quick to put out the blaze.

The fire had just started around 10.30pm last night. Photo: Michael Ivanov.

The fire had just started around 10.30pm last night. Photo: Michael Ivanov.

NSW Rural Fire Service Namoi/Gwydir Superintendent Michael Brooks confirmed the call-out to 24 Quatro Road, Ashley on January 10.

“The grass fires were caused by lightening due to storm activity in the area,” he said.

Mr Ivanov and many of Ashley’s residents were thankful for the local fire fighters who swiftly contained the fires, despite how quickly it was spreading with the dry, dead grass.

“It’s so dry it just took off, about a half acre was burned out.

“The Ashley brigade were brilliant,” he said.

Superintendent Brooks said Wednesday was quite busy for the Ashley brigade, who were earlier called out to contain a hay stack fire alight along Keams Road, south of Moree.

The aftermath of the grass fires in Ashley. Photo: Michael Ivanov.

The aftermath of the grass fires in Ashley. Photo: Michael Ivanov.

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