Authorities are continuing to monitor a bushfire south-west of Alice Springs that forced the evacuation of staff and tourists from the Kings Canyon Resort on Thursday. 

Key points:

  • Staff, tourists and nearby residents were evacuated from Kings Canyon resort in Central Australia
  • The fire started about three days ago and is being monitored by Parks and Wildlife rangers
  • The scenic Mereenie Loop is closed to stop people travelling to the region

Police superintendent Brett Prowse said the blaze in Watarrka National Park started about three days ago and came quite close to the resort.

“[People there] were given the option to relocate to Kings Creek station, which a majority have, but some decided to continue on with their travels either interstate, back into South Australia or further into the Northern Territory,” he said.

Superintendent Prowse said the Mereenie Loop was closed and there had been no reported injuries.

Kings Canyon Resort

The spectacular outback setting of the Kings Canyon Resort.(

Supplied: Kings Canyon Resort

)

“Bushfires NT has been working closely with Parks and Wildlife in relation to fighting the fire and putting in various back-burning efforts around the infrastructure out there.

Some fencing had been damaged, he said.

“There has been some minor damage around some of the non-essential infrastructure, but all stuff can be repaired quite quickly.”

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Central Australian Parks district manager Phil Cowan said conditions had eased at the park.

“We had a light sprinkle of rain, about one to three millimetres, which has helped us a lot,” he said.

“The resort is safe.”

Parks Australia, which jointly manages Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, helped with firefighting efforts.

“Parks Australia offered one crew and a firefighting appliance,” Mr Cowan said.

“Given the remoteness of the location, it’s good to have our neighbours pitching in and helping us out.”

Superintendent Prowse said it had been a coordinated response to fight the fire and to protect people and the resort.

“We’ve had a range of different firefighting capabilities out there, including fighting wildfire capacity as well as having those that could actually, if we had any structure fires, that we had the right specialist assets there.

“The plan [today] is around some more back-burning around the resort buildings.”

He said concerns remained about today’s weather conditions with predicted thunderstorms.

“With revised windy conditions expected across Central Australia today, it means it’s going to be a tough job for the excellent firefighter crews that we have out in the area.

Posted , updated 

Popular outback resort closed amid bushfire scare
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