Port of Newcastle notifies EPA as crews work to control Kooragang fire

Port of Newcastle notifies EPA as crews work to control Kooragang fire Photo: Paul Scott

TweetFacebookInitial crews began fire attack maneuvers using two lines of hose and breathing apparatus to control the blaze.

Port of Newcastle chief executive Craig Carmody told the Herald that workers were dismantling a redundant conveyor system on the Kooragang No. 2 wharf, a general cargo berth used to load and unload various bulk cargoes including fertiliser and petroleum coke. An investigation will be undertaken to determine the cause of the fire, he said.

“Port of Newcastle is currently undertaking deconstruction works at its Kooragang 2 berth as part of its Newcastle Bulk Terminal upgrade. This involves the dismantling of the berth’s existing crane infrastructure, which is now over 50 years old,” Mr Carmody said.

“The fire was contained to a disused conveyor belt on the crane that was being demolished. There was no ship at the berth during the incident.”

Workers have been dismantling old cranes on that part of the berth for some time.

Workers were either oxy-welding or cutting when sparks from their equipment set fire to one of the rubber conveyor belts no longer in use.

Kooragang No.2 and the adjoining Kooragang No.3 operate under the name Newcastle Bulk Terminal.

The Herald understands the terminal’s operations were not affected by the fire.

A spokesperson for Fire and Rescue NSW said everyone on the scene had been accounted for.

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