Walpole fire: Emergency alert for suspicious blaze in Walpole Wilderness Area in the Shire of Denmark

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Smoke billows into the air near Mt Frankland as the bushfire in Walpole burns on.
Camera IconSmoke billows into the air near Mt Frankland as the bushfire in Walpole burns on. Credit: Stefan Dreher/Facebook

People in the southern part of the Walpole Wilderness Area have been told to evacuate now as an out of control bushfire, believed to be deliberately lit, threatens lives and homes about 50km west of Denmark.

And the inferno is spreading towards the beloved Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk — a tourist attraction that takes punters through the canopy on steel footbridges.

The emergency warning area was expanded at 9.30pm Thursday, with residents urged to leave in a southerly direction towards Peaceful Bay or Walpole.

If residents are unable to do so, the Department of Fire and Emergency Services urges people to shelter inside their homes.

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The blaze has already burned through 2000ha as winds fanned flames in a westerly direction.

There is an immediate threat to lives and homes in the area bounded by Mount Frankland Road, North Walpole Road, Bridge Road, Trent Road, Hazelvale Road, Rose Road, Valley of The Giants Road and Vigus Road. Soho Block and Collus Block to the north and east in the Shire of Denmark are also under threat.

The blaze could be seen from the Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk.
Camera IconThe blaze could be seen from the Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk. Credit: Leanne Hall/Facebook

A separate watch and act alert has been issued north east of the emergency area in parts of Hazelvale, Tingledale, Bow Bridge and Trent.

Firefighters are on the scene and aerial support was assisting ground crews before nightfall.

Once it’s dark, it is too dangerous for firefighting choppers and planes to take to the skies.

The blaze started near Nornalup Road, Middle Road and Boronia Road and is moving in a south-westerly direction.

It is not contained or controlled.

The fire was first reported at 3.50am on Thursday before multiple blazes started to burn in the southern part of the Walpole Wilderness Area in the Shire of Denmark.


· If the way is clear, leave now for a safer place.

· Do not wait and see, leaving at the last minute could put your life in danger.

· Close all doors and windows and turn off evaporative air conditioners, but keep water running through the system if possible.

· If you cannot leave, you need to get ready to shelter in your home.

· Go to a room in your home away from the fire front and make sure you can easily escape.

· Choose a room with two exits and water such as a kitchen or laundry.

· If you are not at home, it’s too dangerous to return.

The fire is believed to be deliberately lit and the WA Police arson squad is investigating.

An advice-level alert is also in place for the area northeast of the uncontained blaze in the areas of Nornalup and Middle Road junction, and the Middle and Boronia Road junction.

Some roads and the Munda Biddi Trail, including the Boona Mundak Hut, are closed and drivers are asked to avoid the area or drive carefully.

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

PWS at the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions is managing the fire.

For the latest updates visit Emergency WA, call 13 DFES (13 33 37), follow DFES on Facebook, listen to ABC Local Radio, 6PR, or news bulletins

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