A bushfire has broken out at Ballandean and residents have been told now is the time to leave.
A bushfire has broken out at Ballandean and residents have been told now is the time to leave. Vicki Wood

Caution advised: Speed limit reduced, Girraween closed

UPDATE: TUESDAY 4PM

The speed limit in the village of Ballandean has been reduced from 80km/h to 60km/h due to the fire situation.

A control post for the Ballandean fire has been set up in the village.

Sergeant Alan Baker, of Wallangarra police, said on Tuesday afternoon, two choppers were dropping fire retardant on the fire.

"There are a number of hot spots," he said.

"This is the possibility of some backburning on Tuesday night but it all depends on the wind."

The highway at Ballandean has not be closed since the fire at Ballandean broke out.

At 3.35pm Tuesday, the Ballandean bushfire was burning in an area between Rees Road and Eukey Road, Ballandean. Properties are not under direct threat at this time.

Firefighters are working to strengthen containment lines with efforts focused around properties along Rees Road and Eukey Road. Crews will remain on scene throughout the afternoon.

Residents who have left can now return home, however caution should be used as there may be hazards in the area.

The Girraween National Park is currently closed to the public due to this bushfire.

People in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.

Call 000 immediately if you believe you or your property is under threat.

UPDATE: TUESDAY 7AM

Residents have been advised to return home but remain cautious as a bushfire continues to burn at Ballandean. 

QFES issued an advice warning for the area about 12.10am this morning, which remains in place.

"You need to keep up to date and decide what actions you will take if the situation changes," the latest update reads.

The bushfire is burning in an area between Rees Road and Eukey Road, Ballandean, with no properties under direct threat.

Firefighters are working to strengthen containment lines with efforts focused around properties along Rees Road and Eukey Road.

Crews remained on scene overnight.

Residents who have left can now return home, however caution should be used as there may be hazards in the area.

People in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.

Phone 000 immediately if you believe you or your property is under threat.

UPDATE: MONDAY 8.15PM 

THE bushfire is burning within containment lines in the Stanthorpe and Applethorpe area.

Firefighters in the area continue to strengthen and consolidate containment lines with efforts focused on Ellwood Road, Kelly Road, Allen Lane and into the Broadwater State Forest.

Crews continue to conduct ongoing patrols to the west of the New England Highway, including at Plant Lane, McGrath Lane, Caves Road, Amiens Road and in the general areas around Happy Valley and Stanthorpe.

The safety of residents and firefighters remains a priority. As a result, an exclusion zone remains in place tonight. This area is bounded by:
• Ellwood Road, Kelly Road and Allen Lane in the north
• The New England Highway in the east, with the exception of Spiller Lane, Roessler Avenue, Ann Street and Sofia Lane
• Amiens Road and McGrath Lane in the south
• Plant Lane in the west

The Exclusion Zone will be lifted tomorrow at 10am with restricted access to local residents only.

UPDATE 4.30PM

Conditions are getting worse around the Ballandean bushfire and residents are being urged to leave now.

A watch and act warning is in place for the area, as a fast-moving dangerous fire is travelling in a northeasterly direction from the New England Highway towards Girraween.

 It is expected to impact Rees Road and Eukey Road and could have a significant impact on the community.

Residents are being advised to follow their bushfire survival plans. 

"If you do not have a plan, your safest option is to leave now if it is clear to do so," a QFES alert read.

"If you are not in the area, do not return, as conditions are too dangerous."

The fire is expected to impact Rees Road and Eukey Road and could have a significant impact on the community.

Waterbombing aircraft and fire crews are working to contain the fire but firefighters may not be able to protect every property. 

Power, water, and mobile phone service may be lost.

People in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.

An evacuation centre is open at the Stanthorpe Fitness Centre.

Phone 000 immediately if you believe you are under threat.

INITIAL 1.50PM

Fires have broken out in three new locations on the Granite Belt with residents in Ballandean told to evacuate.

Crews are currently responding to blazes in Ballandean, as well as Eukey and Pozieres.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) say conditions are getting worse and have updated the bushfire warning level to 'watch and act'.

"A fast-moving, dangerous fire is travelling in an easterly direction from the New England Highway towards Girraween. It is expected to impact Rees Road, Eukey Road and Pyramids Road," a QFES spokesperson said.

"The fire could have a significant impact on the community.

"Fire crews are working to contain the fire but firefighters may not be able to protect every property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door.

"Power, water, and mobile phone service may be lost."

Tayla Dachs with Dave a former police horse. She was unable to get to the property with her float due to evacuation so her mother drove him down beside her vehicle with her hand out the window.
Tayla Dachs with Dave a former police horse. She was unable to get to the property with her float due to evacuation so her mother drove him down beside her vehicle with her hand out the window. Vicki Wood



Rod Macpherson and daughter Sancha were told to leave their home on Eukey Rd.

"There was heaps of smoke and then fire units appeared - bit of a hint something is happening," Mr Macpherson said.

"They (fireys) turned up and had a look around and sort of set themselves up a bit and said 'mate, you might want to get some things together' - which I'd already had done.

"I popped stuff in the car and they said leave here now.

"There's been a horrible inevitably about the fires here. We don't normally get fires like this.

"We had fires here in February March and again now. We might consider doing something about climate change," Mr Macpherson said.

An evacuation centre is open at the Ballandean Hall and Sports Club at 28202 New England Hwy, Ballandean.

There is also a grass fire burning near Scotts Camp Road and Rabbit Fence Road, Pozieres.

"This fire broke out earlier today. Nearby residents may be affected by a smoke haze throughout the day," a QFES spokesperson said.
 

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