1 December 1979 Bushfire

Bushfire - Sydney and Region

In December 1979, New South Wales experienced its driest period since 1972. A heatwave combined with dry conditions caused the outbreak of fires in the first week of December. In the following weeks a number of incidents were reported in towns such as Duffys Forest, Lucas Heights, Terry Hills, Ingleside, Belrose, Elanora Heights, Lithgow, Mount Wilson, Mount Tomah and Grose Valley. A number of these fires were deliberately lit by arsonists.

The fires caused widespread damage to millions of hectares of land. Critical infrastructure including communication equipment, roads, property fencing and railways were damaged or destroyed. Twenty-eight homes were destroyed, 20 homes were damaged. Five deaths were attributed to the fires.

Quick Statistics

28 Home(s) destroyed
20 Home(s) damaged
Information Sources

Information Sources

Collins P, Burn the epic story of bushfire in Australia, 2006, pp 214-216


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New South Wales

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