Local Fire History 

  • 2013: 18-31 October - Major Bushfires in Wollondilly, Blue Mountains including: Bilpin, Lithgow, Mountain Lagoon, Howes Swamp areas. A number of houses lost. Ingleside provided 50 volunteers over a 14 day period to assist in the Blue Mountain area.

  • 2013: 1 October - Fuel Tanker Crash and Roll over, Mona Vale Road, Mona Vale. An out of control Fuel Tanker careered down Mona Vale Road from Foleys Hills, overturning, catching fire and crashing into a number of cars. Sadly two persons were killed and a number of people were injured with serious burns. Ingleside, were first on scene to the incident, followed by Tumbledown Dick Brigade, Warringah Headquarters and Belrose Brigades. These 4 Brigades were instrumental in extinguishing fire using Fire Fighting Foam, providing first aid to serious injured persons and property protection to the nearby 'Blackmores' Factory. A number of RFS awards were awarded by the RFS Commissioner:
  • RFS Commissioners Commendation for Bravery Deputy Captain Gary Sambridge and Crew Leader Joshua Denney. 
  • RFS Commissioner Commendation for Service RFS Commander & Ingleside Brigade Captain Sean McLoughlin
  • RFS Commissioner Unit Citation Deputy Captains Scott Molenaar & Joshua Alexander, Fire Fighters Andrew Johnston and Gordon Smith
  • 2013  27 September - Barrenjoey Headland, Palm Beach Bushfire. Ingleside RFS volunteers instrumental in saving the historical buildings.
  • 2013  January - Large bush fire at Towlers Bay, West Head. Ingleside RFS volunteers provide over a week of crews to assist in containment.
  • 2012  October - “Long Trail” Hazard Reduction aka Duffys Fire, a large area to the North of Duffys Forest. September - “Wirreanda” Hazard Reduction, Ingleside. August - “Smith Creek West” Hazard Reduction, North of Terrey Hills. May - “Deep Creek” Hazard Reduction, South-East of Terrey Hills. “Sports Academy” Hazard Reduction, Narrabeen. 
  • 2007  January - Mt Ku Ring Gai fires, active for more than 11 days, which were prevented from crossing Cowan Creek into Duffys Forest with an emergency Bushfire (Section 44) declared.
  • October - Little Pittwater Bay fire, Bushfire Emergency Declared with RFS tankers and fire-boats working together.
  • 2004  January - Ellis Trig fire at West Head, lasting four days and burning 1480 hectares of bushland. Bushfire Emergency declared with tankers brought in from across NSW.

  • 1994  Friday 7 January: Large Bushfire in the Warringah and Pittwater LGA. Resulting in the loss of many houses and bushland.  Many local Brigades sent throughout NSW in the lead up to the 'January 1994' fires.
  • 1979  A total fire ban and a state of emergency declared.  Multiple fire fronts throughout Duffys Forest, Terrey Hills, Tumble Down Dick, Ingleside, Elanora and Narrabeen over six days.  Water supply failed.  14 homes lost, including 2 in Duffys, and many others damaged.
  • 1977 Total fire ban, fires in Towler’s bay, Belrose, Ingleside and Terrey Hills.
  • 1971 Fires across North Turramurra, Allambie Heights, Belrose and Duffys Forest which lasted four days.
  • 1968 Several large fires across Terrey Hills and Duffys Forest, with houses lost at St Ives.
  • 1967 Fires in and around Belrose, with a School Hall destroyed in Ralston Avenue.
  • 1965 A fire starting at St Ives showground burnt more than 20 square kilometres of bush, with 200 homes saved.
  • 1964  October - Large fire to the North-West of Duffys Forest.
  • December - 1000 hectare fire that began on West Head Road and reached the North-East of Duffys Forest.
  • 1953 Large fires stretching from Terrey Hills to Ingleside.
  • 1951 Fires across NSW, claiming six lives. Many houses were lost including six homes within Terrey Hills.
  • 1948 Large fires throughout Terrey Hills and Duffys Forest.
  • 1947 A local fire burned for three days in the local area.
  • 1946 Several small fires extinguished with no loss of life or property.
  • 1944 November - fires across Sydney, with 22 homes lost in the Blue Mountains.
  • December - Total fire ban, Sydney encircled by fire, three lives lost, houses lost at Hornsby and St Ives.  Fires threatened Terrey Hills for three days, back-burning by the local brigade prevented losses as well as help from NSW Fire Brigade, police and the army.
  • 1939 Several houses lost in a large fire surrounding Terrey Hills.
  • 1936 Many houses lost from large fires ranging from St Ives to Terrey Hills.

2013 - Barrenjoey Headland Bushfire

Story: ABC News - Sydney RFS Fire Fighters

Almost 80 NSW Rural Fire Service volunteers have worked this morning to contain a bushfire on Sydney's northern beaches, near the historic Barrenjoey Lighthouse

The blaze started yesterday on the Barrenjoey Headland near Palm Beach and has burnt out 17 hectares of bushland. The RFS said crews succeeded in saving the main lighthouse, but there is some damage to the roof of one building in the complex. Spokesman Brendan Doyle said crews are still on scene.

"Currently crews are allowing the fire to burn slowly down to the waterline," he said.  "Crews are obviously controlling any hot spots around the main ridge of the Barrenjoey headland and any problem trees that may be in the area."

Two helicopters were on the scene yesterday to help firefighters after the fire broke out at 2:00pm (AEST).

The blaze had cut off access to the walking track at the headland and at the height of the fire it was feared tourists may have been trapped.  However, all people have been accounted for. One firefighter has been treated for minor burns. Authorities had warned that if anyone was stuck in the area they could seek shelter at the lighthouse, where there was a clearing from the scrub.

Above: Some of the Ingleside Rural Fire Brigade Crew who were instrumental in saving the historic building of the Barrenjoey Lighthouse at Palm Beach.

Below: The first on scene Ingleside crew, pushed through fire crossing the small track to the top to get to the buildings. This picture was taken just prior to some of our crew running through towards to the top of the hill. 

Below: Barrenjoey Headland is the backdrop to Summer Bay, the fictional suburb of long running TV series: Home and Away. Following the bushfire, our members couldn't help but get a quick photo with the surfclub vehicle that assisted in getting crews to the top of the headland. 

2003 January - Canberra, Australian Capital Territory: Four bushfires that had been burning in Brindabella mountains for more than a week combined and roared into Canberra's south-western suburbs, destroying 500 homes and claiming four lives with over 490 injured. This bushfire caused severe damage to the suburbs and outer areas of Canberra, the capital city of Australia, during 18–22 January 2003.

1994 Bushfire: Warringah and Pittwater LGA area

At around 1630hrs on Friday January 7, a fire started at Cottage Point which, under the influence of the adverse weather conditions, spread rapidly with high intensity. In just three and a half hours the 2km wide eastern fire front impacted upon the residential area of Ingleside - some 7km from its source. The fire also fanned out to the northeast, across Coal and Candle Creek towards the Pittwater shoreline suburbs of Elvina Bay, Church Point and Bayview and to the southwest towards Terrey Hills. Its southeasterly run took it towards Mona Vale Road. Within 27 hours from ignition, it had significantly impacted on the suburbs of Church Point, Bayview, Warriewood, Elanora Heights and Cromer, as well as other residential areas on the eastern side of the West Head Peninsula. Over Saturday night, the fire had continued to move in a south easterly direction. By 1400hrs, the south eastern edge had reached Warriewood, with the western flank located 2km north of Terrey Hills. By 0900hrs Saturday 8th January the fire was well into north easterly run. Eight hundred campers and residents of Elvina Bay were evacuated from Pittwater’s Western Shores by ferry. Firefighters continued to concentrate on the protection of life and property. Conditions made it impossible for them to attempt containment of the fire at this time. Residents were evacuated as the fire spread to the north east, south, south east and south west. At noon, it jumped Mona Vale Road and by 1500hrs the retirement village at Collaroy was evacuated after the fire had spotted across Wakehurst Parkway and Narrabeen Lakes. Two home units were destroyed. Property was also lost at Ingleside, Elanora Heights, Bayview, Lovett Bay and Elvina Bay. Firefighters worked to contain different flanks of the fire over a number of days. During this time it threatened properties in a number of areas. All fires in Warringah/Pittwater were contained by January 12.

Sydney Weather 1994 Fires:

January 5 36.0 degrees 16% from ENE at 31km/hr from ENE at 59km/hr

January 6 37.3 degrees 12% from WNW at 35km/hr from W at 69km/hr 

January 7 37.8 degrees 8% from W at 40km/hr from WNW at 50km/hr 

January 8 36.8 degrees 12% from W at 39 km/hr from NNW at 76km/hr 

January 9 27.9 degrees 32% from ESE at 31 km/hr from ESE at 44 km/hr

January 10 25.1 degrees 61% from E at 22km/hr from E at 48km/hr 

January 11 26.6 degrees 61% from ENE at 31km/hr from ENE at 67km/hr

January 12 30.0 degrees 69% from E at 26km/hr from ENE at 59km/hr

1975 - 

1952 - Residents of the rural area of Ingleside met to discuss the forming of the Ingleside Bushfire Brigade. The residents of the local Ingleside area were varied with a small number of rural holdings with glass houses and small farms around the area. The threat of bushfires had been known for a number of years, with many residents called upon to defend each others homes during bushfires. The residents form the Ingleside Bushfire Brigade in 1952. Whilst the early years of the Brigade can be confirmed as starting in 1952, the details of the first few years membership is limited with the Brigade Captain unknown from 1952-1956.

Views expressed on this website do not necessarily represent those of the NSW Rural Fire Service. During an emergency, do not rely on information placed on this site, please reference the NSW RFS website at www.rfs.nsw.gov.au, or call 1800 NSW RFS for emergency information. This site is not monitored 24/7.

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