INTERNATIONAL reinforcements are on the way as the Harrietville bushfire continues to burn out of control.
In the next two days 44 firefighters from New Zealand and 44 from NSW will enter Victoria as part of what Fire Services Commissioner Craig Lapsley said was a “planned approach” to managing the deadly fire season.
“[It] has been a well-calculated plan in ensuring that we bring into the state specialist forest firefighters that will work in deep-seated bush areas,” Mr Lapsley said.
He said the expert resources would be sent to the 27,000ha Harrietville bushfire, which started with a lightning strike on January 21.
“The fire is not under control … We don’t believe that these alpine fires will come under control until we have decent rain,” Mr Lapsley said.
Firefighters have been working to control spot fires and build containment lines around the blaze but the fire’s remote location has hindered progress.
With no significant rain forecast for the rest of February, Mr Lapsley warned that Victoria was “in for a continued fire season”.
He said emergency resources were constantly being reviewed as crews were called to new fires on a daily basis.
“We’re seeing a continual event now of every afternoon we’re having fires even if it’s not extremely hot,” he said.