Pair stays calm as blaze hits
AS flames 50 metres high sped towards Rhonda and Col Jones's Queenslander home at 80 kilometres an hour the couple rushed to soak the new deck.
But the Rockhampton pair didn't stress.
Their Lakes Creek home, on Rockhampton's outskirts, was in the firing line as a ferocious bushfire ripped through the Mt Archer National Park on Saturday.
Rhonda used a garden hose to soak the timber deck, which is only half complete.
Col stayed in the yard and used water containers and bags to put out spot fires.
“I stood here and just kept my eye on these guys, to make sure I didn't lose anyone in the flames,” Rhonda said.
Up to six rural crews were in the back yard of the Montgomerie Street block, battling the blaze that threatened to engulf Rhonda and Col's home and the homes of their neighbours.
It took an hour for the blaze to burn through two hills and a valley before it reached Col and Rhonda's back yard.
Col had taken a day off work only days earlier to clear dead scrub from the fence to protect from fires.
It's taken Col 15 years to collect the feature pieces for the old Queenslander, which they moved to the block for renovation six months ago.
“I was just sitting here saying, 'Well our possessions aren't in the house yet so if it goes, it goes, there's nothing we can do',” Rhonda said.
“But the rural firies knew exactly what they were doing.”
Col and Rhonda couldn't praise enough the efforts of the fire crews that saved their home on the weekend.
“At no time did I feel that the fire was out of control,” Rhonda said, despite having watched monstrous flames tear past their home.
After watching the bushfire move around their block, Rhonda said they caught their breath and prayed for the next people in the firing line.
Rhonda said the fire “roared” over the next hill and towards more homes.The pair hope to move into the Lakes Creek home in one month.The rural firies knew exactly what they were doing