QFES are on scene
QFES are on scene Bev Lacey

Fire on New England Highway burns to five metres of structures

UPDATE: 5.30pm: A large fire at Severnlea which started at noon Sunday burnt 300 hectares of grass and was within 5m of structures.

Queensland Fire and Rescue Service South West Queensland regional manager Tony Johnstone said the fire burnt 150 hectares of grass on each side of the New England Highway.

"There were no sheds, structures or vineyards destroyed,” he said.

"The fire got to within five metres of structures.”

"People need to be vigilant at this time about the high fire risk. Inquiries into the cause of this fire are underway.”

The Queensland Fire and Emergency Service was quickly into gear once the fire was reported and had 16 appliances on scene when there was a threat to homes and commercial buildings in the New England Highway/Back Creek Rd area.

A spokeswoman for the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service said at 5.25pm that back burning was being undertaken on the southern flank of the fire.

"The fire is out in all other sectors,” she said.

Earlier in the day, the fire jumped the New England Highway and railway line and the highway was closed due to the smoke hazard. Traffic was diverted on other roads.

Two urban appliances from Warwick headed to Stanthorpe to assist but arrived back at the Warwick station at 4.58pm and 5.21pm but two urban appliances from Stanthorpe and multiple rural fire brigade appliances were still on scene at 5.25pm.

A fire appliance from Toowoomba and team of auxiliaries had headed to Warwick during the afternoon to answer any calls for help from the Warwick area.

At the height of the fire, there were nine rural and seven urban appliances on scene as well as a large water tanker from Southern Downs Regional Council.

UPDATE: 3.15PM: The swift action of firefighters on 16 appliances has saved homes and commercial buildings from destruction on Sunday afternoon.

The fire was on the New England Highway near the intersection with Back Creek Road at Severnlea south of Stanthorpe and the call went out for help at noon.

A spokeswoman for the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services said 16 fire units went to the fire and were still on scene at 3.15pm.

"There were seven urban units and nine rural fire brigade units on scene along with a Southern Downs Regional Council water tanker and urban senior fire officer,” she said.

"There were homes and commercial buildings under threat. Buildings are now all safe and the fire is under control in different sectors.

"The fire did jump the highway. All firefighters are still on scene.”

With the two larger Warwick appliances and crews south of Stanthorpe, a crew of auxiliaries from Toowoomba has travelled to Warwick to be available if needed while the town's firefighters are at Severnlea.

Highway traffic has been getting through on side roads.

EARLIER: Emergency services are on the scene of a grass fire at Severnlea, south of Stanthorpe.

Traffic is being diverted on the New England Highway around the fire area with diversions in place at Kerridges and Beverley rds.

Fire crews are on the scene of the fire which started just before noon.

Police are diverting traffic.