The Hernes Oak-McDonald’s Track fire

The Hernes Oak–McDonald’s Track fire ignited on 7 February 2014. The Country Fire Authority (CFA) Fire Investigation Report records that the fire was reported to CFA via a 000 call at 3.18 pm. The origin of the fire was recorded as the intersection of McDonald’s Track and McGraths Track, Hernes Oak, which is approximately five kilometres west of Morwell.16

The Hernes Oak–McDonald’s Track fire was initially a fast moving grass fire. It covered an area of approximately 150 hectares by 8 pm that night. The fire was reported as ‘going’ and was being managed as a Level 1 fire incident by the local CFA.17

By 8 am on 8 February 2014, the fire was contained and by 9.30 am, a control line had been established around the fire.18 The fire was still burning internally.19 As at 11 pm on 8 February 2014, the Hernes Oak–McDonald’s Track fire had covered 156 hectares and its perimeter had been fully tracked for patrol by firefighters.20

The Hernes Oak–McDonald’s Track fire remained contained throughout the morning of 9 February 2014.21 The small plume of smoke from the Hernes Oak-McDonald’s Track fire can be seen in Figure 2.4 below.

Figure 2.4 Hernes Oak–McDonald’s Track fire at 9.25 am on 9 February 201422

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This photograph shows the footprint of the Hernes Oak–McDonald’s Track fire as at 9.25 am on 9 February 2014, taken facing east. Smoke from the fire can be seen in the lower right-hand side of the photograph. The Yallourn mine can be seen at the top of the photograph with the Princes Freeway curving from the middle left-hand side of the photograph to the top middle of the photograph.