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Lancefield local says fire should have ‘never’ been lit, anger ‘warranted’

A Lancefield local with extensive fire experience has accused the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) of breaking its own rules.

He said the anger surrounding this week’s bushfire was absolutely warranted.

An out of control fire, now covering 4000 hectares, continues to burn north of Melbourne after a planned burn reignited on Tuesday.

At least two homes have been lost and many more remain in danger.

Gordon Meyer, who lives just south of Lancefield, attended a heated community meeting on Wednesday, where many ‘extremely angry and upset’ locals were demanding answers.

‘Especially those who have homes locked in the fire zone and don’t know if they still own a home or not,’ he said on 3AW Drive.

‘It’s pulling at their hearts and minds way too much.’

Mr Meyer, who worked for the DSE (now DELWP) for 18 years and was a 30-year CFA volunteer, told Tom Elliott a number of rules had clearly been ignored.

He said the fire should have never been lit.

‘No, it shouldn’t have and the anger is warranted,’ he said.

‘I think this is the third occasion in the last five years they’ve lit outside their own prescriptions.

‘And by prescriptions, I mean a set of regulations you have to adhere to that when you light a burn ? and we do need burns ? that the burn will stay where it’s supposed to behind containment lines.’

He said people in ‘shiny seats’ in Melbourne would have ordered the burn, without thinking it through.

‘These blokes are chasing hectares, rather than safety,’ he said.

LISTEN: Gordon Meyer joins Tom Elliott on 3AW Drive