The CFA’s FireReady flyer is wrong to state that fires can travel 60kmh in grassland and 40kmh in forest. The fastest fire front speeds ever registered are 22 kph in grassland and 15 kph in forest. Fastest noted on Black Saturday. was 12 kph burning over Mt Disappointment towards Strathewen. The 60 km/h is for short pulses of fire. Kevin Tolhurst told the RC fire ‘could have spread 60 kph in grassland and 40 kph in forest FOR 100TH OF AN HOUR - about half a minute.’
On Black Saturday, the fire took 3 hours (3 pm -6 pm) to travel the 30 km from Murrindindi to Marysville, a rate of 10 kph.
The initial fire started at East Kilmore at 11.30 am. It reached Kinglake (just under 30 k as the crow or ember flies) after 5 pm. Moving at 40 km/h, it would have been at Warragul by then - even if it had travelled the173 km by road!