Fire closes High Street

Photo: Brian Wilson ietsystems
Photo: Brian Wilson ietsystems

High Street in Kyneton was closed to traffic for several hours last night and again early this morning while fire crews attended to a large shed fire.
Kyneton firefighters happened to be at the station for a preseason briefing when they received the first callout at 6.45pm on Monday and were on scene within three minutes.
Brigades from Kyneton, Malmsbury, Carlsruhe and Tylden were assisted by specialist units from Bendigo and Gisborne.
The fire was caused by a spark from welding. One person suffered smoke inhalation and was taken to Kyneton Hospital by a neighbour.
Incident controller and 1st lieutenant at Kyneton, Gareth McIntyre, said the shed was fully alight when firefighters arrived and was difficult to access down a narrow back alleyway.
“We had to close the main road because the water mains are on the north side of the road and the fire was on the south side, requiring hoses across the road,” he said.
Mr McIntyre said the brigade had controlled the fire on the Monday evening and planned to reattend at 9am on Tuesday, however the fire behaviour increased during the night requiring immediate reattendance about 4.30am.
A resident down near the river called in the fire on Tuesday morning believing smoke visible was coming from Sacred Heart College.
“The reason the fire reignited was because of the way the shed was stacked like Tetris, storing valuable and antique furniture right up to the roof, making gaining access to the centre of the fire very difficult,” Mr McIntyre said.
“We had to take the roof off the shed to help get all the heat out and used foam to penetrate deeper into the fire.”
Mr McIntyre said atmospheric monitoring deemed the immediate area around the fire unsafe to breath without protective equipment, requiring firefighters to use and refill 26 breathing apparatus units.
“We provided a door knock to all houses down wind to advise them to remain indoors with their windows and doors closed, or if they were vulnerable – young or elderly – to leave until the smoke cleared.”
Mr McIntyre said the incident served as a reminder for drivers never to drive over fire hoses.
“The hoses are the lifeline for firefighters in a burning building,” he said.
“Not even another emergency vehicle will cross over a fire hose.
“The good news is that when we did have the road back open drivers were very well behaved and slowed down to 40km/h which was really good.”
Firefighters returned to check on the fire throughout Tuesday.