Tarkeeth burning causes grave concern

Images By Adele Hemphill.
Images By Adele Hemphill.

Residents near Tarkeeth State Forest have reported near out of control fires in the timber plantation. 

“Firefighters are battling to control Forestry Corporation's run away windrows at Fells Road,” Paul Hemphill said. “Residents had asked Forestry Corporation to push the windrows back further from the road, but once again their very reasonable request was refused.”

The Courier-Sun spoke to Paul as he was trying to exit the Fells Road entrance today, but had been told to wait for nearly 15 minutes due to the fire danger.

The log trucks are still running. 

Earlier, concerned locals had asked people to make sure the effects of fire in the Valley were reported. On the Tarkeeth State Forest Facebook page the post read: “It's important that you report smoke pollution to the EPA hotline … please report how the smoke affects you, your family, your animals, your business, etc. Also, time, date and wind direction. It is essential to keep a written record on file of all conversations”.

Greens member, Carol Vernon said it was “appalling practice (which had) no regard for community”.

In response to concerns raised, the NSW Forestry Corporation said the fire was part of clear-felling program currently underway in Tarkeeth State Forest. 

“Forestry Corporation has undertaken a routine operation of windrow burning in the Tarkeeth plantation as part of the preparation to re-plant the harvested area with new seedlings,” a Forestry Corporation spokesperson said.

“This was undertaken in-line with the plan and remained well contained throughout the day.”