Arson and Explosive detectives determine cause of bushfires

Detectives from the Arson and Explosives Squad with the assistance of local police, CFA fire investigators and other agencies have investigated the cause of four fires in the states south west which started on Saturday 17 March, Victoria Police say.

The causes of the four fires, which started between 8pm and 9.30pm, have all been deemed as not being deliberately lit.

The fire in MacArthurs Penshurst Road, Gazette started when a tree in a bluegum plantation fell onto power lines, bringing them to the ground. Electrical sparks then ignited surrounding vegetation.

The Terang-Cobden Road fire was a result of power lines clashing in high winds causing electrical arcs and igniting surrounding vegetation.

The Occupation lane, Garvoc fire was caused by a power pole snapping in high winds and falling to the ground. Electrical arcs then ignited the vegetation.

The Camperdown-Bullen Merri (Gnotuk) fire was also caused by a tree limb falling across lines bringing them to the ground. An earth wire on a nearby power pole then became exposed causing the pole to become energised and igniting surrounding vegetation.

During the fires there was no loss of life.

The Arson and Explosives Squad monitor all bushfires and deploy to all major bushfires and explosives incidents as well as investigating suspicious fire deaths or injury, bomb explosive devices and fatalities involving wildfire/bushfire.

Victoria police has now concluded its investigation into this matter unless any further evidence comes to light.

Any matters related to the power infrastructure will now be considered by Energy Safe Victoria.

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