Meelon Fire: Police believe stolen car fire started blaze

Photo: Rachel Fenner
Photo: Rachel Fenner

Updated 1.30pm, March 15

Police believe the Meelon bushfire was started by a stolen car being set on fire.

They are investigating the circumstances surrounding the suspicious bushfire.

Police believe the fire was started in the early hours (around 2.30am) of March 14, by a stolen car being set on fire on Scarp Road near Pinjarra-Williams Road.

The fire quickly spread to bushland and continues to burn.

They would like to speak to anyone who was in the area or may have seen any suspicious activity.

The bushfire emergency warning remains for people in Meelon, including people on Napier Road, east of Burnside Road, north of Maddison Road, west of Scarp Road and Murray Hills Estate in the Shire of Murray.

An emergency warning was issued for the fire in north eastern Meelon, near the rail crossing on Pinjarra-Williams Road in the Shire of Murray, early yesterday morning.

200 volunteer career and volunteer Fire and Rescue Service, Bush Fire Service and Department of Parks and Wildlife fire-fighters are on the scene.

The fire is currently stationary, but residents are urged to remain vigilant.

Firefighters have saved many homes and sheds in the area, but some fencing has been lost.

They are currently working to contain the fire on southern boundary.

More than 1250 hectares have been burnt.

The fire has damaged 11 power poles near Dwellingup.

Western Power has connected low voltage generators to provide electricity to the centre of town, the school, the service station and most shops.

Crews are currently replacing seven ‘backbone’ poles that will allow the Dwellingup townsite to be reconnected by tomorrow.

DFES are warning that scheme water may not be available due to damaged infrastructure, power cuts or extreme demand.

People who choose to defend their homes must have an independent water supply and pumping capability.

Newbliss Winery owner Joanne Moore told Coast FM yesterday morning that she was packed up and ready to leave.

“There is black smoke swirling around and you can actually see the red flame in the middle of it,” Ms Moore said.

“It is very intense at present.

“After the fires years ago, I don’t want to go through that again.

“It’s getting really bad.”

Aerial crews are assisting ground crews

Red Cross has opened Register.Find.Reunite.

The registration and inquiry service helps reconnect family, friends and loved ones separated during disasters.

People in the area who have been affected by the Meelon fire are encouraged to register with Red Cross online or in person at the evacuation centre.

Register.Find.Reunite. can also be used by anyone wanting to enquire about the location of friends or family caught up in the disaster.

Registrations and enquiries can be made at or at the evacuation centre set up at the Murray Leisure Centre, 16 Camp Road, Pinjarra.

“Being separated from family and friends is one of the most stressful things a person can experience during an emergency,” said Red Cross State Manager Emergency Services Erin Fuery.

“Not knowing where your loved ones are, not being able to get a hold of them by phone or email adds to that anxiety.

“The simplest way to let your family and friends know you’re okay or to find out that your loved ones are safe is to register with the Register.Find.Reunite. service.

“The service helps find and reunite family, friends and loved ones during a disaster.”

A temporary evacuation centre has been opened at Murray Leisure Centre.

People are asked to report any suspicious behaviour to Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.