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Prime Mover Magazine

Drivers stalled by inferno hit the road

Stranded truck drivers have resumed work after lengthy delays caused by fires near Coolgardie and Norseman in Western Australia.

Travel along the Coolgardie Esperance Highway was deemed too dangerous by the Department of Fire and Emergency Services who enacted a series of road closures in the area last Friday.

Up to 150 drivers of heavy haulage vehicles destined for eastern states sought shelter during the three day delay before roads were were cleared for access on Sunday.

Local businesses in Coolgardie helped provide meals and amenities to the drivers.

Over 50 drivers in nearby Norseman were also hosted for two days as fireman brought blazes, sparked by lightning, under control across the Goldfields-Esperance region.

The bushfires spread to an estimated 33,000 in size but had not impacted residents or properties at last report.

Closures prematurely lifted in the same area during blazes in 2007 led to the deaths of three men when a convoy of more than a dozen trucks en route to Southern Cross unwillingly entered a firestorm following a sudden change in conditions on 30 December.

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