Fireys praised as home saved from bushfire

Ellie Honeybone and Gavin BoxMidwest Times
The blaze came within metres of the Allanooka Springs home.
Camera IconThe blaze came within metres of the Allanooka Springs home. Credit: Miriam Lockie

An Allanooka Springs resident has expressed her relief and gratitude towards local firefighters after their tireless efforts held back a bushfire just metres from her house on Saturday afternoon.

Miriam Lockie was watching the summer storm from her balcony around 4pm when she saw a lightning strike start up a blaze.

She immediately called for help and was overwhelmed by the response.

“There were farmers who arrived with their own personal units and the volunteer fire fighters were not far behind,” she said.

Miriam Lockie was thrilled to discover her goats had survived the bushfire.
Camera IconMiriam Lockie was thrilled to discover her goats had survived the bushfire. Credit: Supplied

“After a while three or four fire trucks came out and I was instructed to pack up and evacuate.

“I let the goats out so they could run and drove away with my great dane before enduring the worst two hour wait of my life.”

Ms Lockie returned to her 45 acre property to find the firefighters had not only saved her home and sheds but her goats were also alive and well.

“I cannot thank all the people who helped me enough, if it weren’t for them I would not have a house,” she said.

The aftermath. Flames were “as big as the trees and jumping across firebreaks”.
Camera IconThe aftermath. Flames were “as big as the trees and jumping across firebreaks”. Credit: Miriam Lockie

“I don’t have insurance and I built the house with my own two hands – it’s all I’ve got.

“The flames were as big as the trees and were jumping across my firebreaks.

“I am so amazed that they managed to get it out and save my house.”

Ms Lockie said the fire had come within two steps of her cars and had burnt through more than 100 acres of neighbouring property.

The scene after the Allanooka Springs fire. About 50 firefighters and farmers turned out to fight the blaze.
Camera IconThe scene after the Allanooka Springs fire. About 50 firefighters and farmers turned out to fight the blaze. Credit: Miriam Lockie

“I was so certain my shed would be burnt and it has $80,000 worth of solar panels on the roof,” she said.

“To everyone who came to my rescue; thank you very much for saving my life.”

Department of Fire and Emergency Services Mid West and Gascoyne regional duty co-ordinator Ian Comben applauded the efforts of fire crews and farmers as they battled 16 fires across the Mid West at the weekend, all caused by lightning.

The blaze, caused by lightning, burnt out about 938 hectares of farmland and bush.
Camera IconThe blaze, caused by lightning, burnt out about 938 hectares of farmland and bush. Credit: Miriam Lockie

The Allanooka blaze was the most damaging, destroying about 938 hectares of farmland and bush.

About 50 people – firefighters from the City of Greater Geraldton, Eradu, Tenindewa, Walkaway, Irwin, Dongara and farmers from surrounding areas – were on hand at the height of the blaze, battling in hot and humid conditions.

The fire was reported about 1.30pm on Saturday and took crews about six hours to bring under control.

Local farmers patrolled the fire ground into the night while rainfall provided welcome relief.

Bushfire devastation in Allanooka Springs.
Camera IconBushfire devastation in Allanooka Springs. Credit: Supplied

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