Claudia Baxter

Investigations into ’suspicious’ Mt Chalmer’s grass fire

PROPERTY damaged, homes evacuated, over 50 fire crews put to work for the two days.

Mt Chalmers was under threat from a large grass fire.

But could that fire have been deliberately lit?

That's the question a team of fire investigators from Brisbane will answer in the coming week as an investigation into a number of fires in the region commences.

Yesterday, acting chief superintendent and director of regional operations central region Jeff King confirmed a number of fires around Central Queensland were under investigation and being treated as suspicious, including the two recent fires at Mt Chalmers.

"The two fires out of Mt Chalmers were quiet significant and as a result we suspect that they are suspicious in nature," act chief King said.

"It's more the location, the point of origin of the fires, when they've started on a particular time of day, there's a range of factors that lead to suspicion. Investigations can be complex, however we generally know within two days whether it was a deliberate fire.

"We always get some deliberately lit fires every fire season but this year because of the dryer conditions as a result of the cyclone debris, fires people may light that they think will be safe are just getting out of hand."

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services assistant commissioner Ewan Cayzer said people would be prosecuted if investigators found any of the fires had been deliberately lit or illegal.

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