Edwina Bartholomew's harrowing close call: "We were grossly underprepared."

Edwina Bartholomew experienced a harrowing close call with a bush fire on her rural property in the Capertee Valley yesterday.

This morning the Sunrise presenter took to Instagram to share her story and warn others in rural areas to have a fire plan.

“This was pretty frightening. After a year of playing farmer, things got very real yesterday and we were grossly under prepared. Thank god for our wonderful neighbours and the @nswrfs for containing the fire in the valley,” she wrote.

“Joining the RFS right away and stocking the shed with everything we need #nswrfs #thankyou,” she added. 

The Channel Seven presenter explained in the comments that she and her partner Neil Varcoe weren’t prepared for the bush fire that ripped through the valley, causing damage to the house next door.

“We just had very little to work with so our neighbours were left to do it all. Don’t want to be in that position again even though the fire was across the hill from us,” she wrote.


“Our fire plan was get the hell out of there this time. Next time we will be equipped to help more.”

Farm couples dressing with the reclusive @neilwrites @warramba #stillsquattingattheneighbours #powerisout #bucketingdown

A post shared by Edwina Bartholomew (@edwina_b) on

A spokesperson from the NSW Rural Fire Service told Mamamia that anyone concerned about the bush fires, should visit, and discuss their fire plan with their family now, before their area is threatened by fire.

The NSW RFS recommends the following four simple steps to prepare yourself and your property for a bush fire:

  1. DISCUSS what to do if a bush fire threatens your home
  2. PREPARE your home and get it ready for bush fire season
  3. KNOW the bush fire alert levels
  4. KEEP handy all the bush fire information numbers, websites, and the smart phone app.

Currently there is a fire burning in the area of Captains Flat Road between Carwoola and Hoskinstown, near Queanbeyan. The fire has burnt more than 3500 hectares of land around Captains Flat Road.

The fire is burning to the west of the old railway line in the Hoskinstown area and remains uncontained. Firefighters have worked throughout the night to protect properties. A number of homes have been destroyed by the fire. Building Impact Assessment teams will move into the area today to confirm and asses the property losses.


Firefighters have contained the bush fire burning in the area of White Cedars Road at Kains Flat, north-east of Mudgee. The fire has burnt more than 6990 hectares of land in the area around White Cedars Road at Kains Flat, north-east of Mudgee.

Although there is no immediate threat to homes in the area, residents should continue to monitor conditions.

Firefighters have contained the Sir Ivan bush fire, situated to the east of Dunedoo in the area around Leadville, Coolah and Cassilis. Crews are continuing to monitor and patrol the fire ground. A Severe fire danger is forecast today and a total fire ban is in force until midnight. While there is no immediate threat to homes, residents should still remain vigilant and monitor conditions.

If you are in the area of Lyndhurst and Mandurama continue to monitor conditions and follow direction from firefighters in the area.

You can find out more information on the NSW RFS website.

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