Early yesterday morning my husband and I noticed great plumes of fire and smoke spectatularly rising many hundreds of feet into the air. Helicopters were circling. As we live high above Sydney Harbour it was clearly visible. Was it a terrorist attack? Had a warehouse caught fire?
There was nothing on our news reports, and the fire was obviously spreading and reminded me of volcanic activity we had recently experienced in Kagoshima Japan with Mt. Sakuajima Volcano.
Smoke seen from my balcony Smoke from Mt Sakurajima volcano
This morning I discovered the smoke was caused by a controlled hazard reduction burnoff, which was conducted not only around Sydney, but this one was from Wyong on the Central Coast, which is an hour's drive from Sydney. The freeway was closed for some time resulting in a lot of disruption for travellers to and from the Central Coast on a Sunday.
25 hectares of bushland was burnt throught the afternoon to establish containment lines as a very hot summer is predicted. Our wonderful NSW Rural Fire Service does an amazing job in conducting burnoffs and fire information to protect areas throught NSW, particularly those with forests and bushlands where fires can take hold and are very difficult to control, as we have experienced in past years, with loss of many lives.