Remains found in burnt shack (WAN)
Picture: Seven News

Manjimup shire president Wade DeCampo says the discovery of a man’s remains in Kin Kin is a tragedy that highlights deficiencies in clearing regulations.

About 10pm last night, police found what they believe to be human remains in a small, burnt-out structure in the middle of the Kin Kin bushfire.

Arson squad officers are at the scene carrying out investigations.

Mr DeCampo said he did not know the man personally, but understood he was in his 50s or 60s and largely kept to himself.

“This particular property was in the middle of a forest, it would have been very difficult to protect,” he said.

“He was bit of a hermit as far we’re aware; he tended to stick to himself.

“(His property) is out in the bush. It would be more difficult to get information out there.”

There are about five private properties and some tourist accommodation in Kin Kin - a heavily-forested area about 30km south-east of Manjiumup.

Mr DeCampo said the tragedy showed how seriously the community needed to approach clearing, fire breaks and prescribed burns.

“This particular property was densely forested; it probably highlights some deficiencies in the clearing regulations,” he said.

“It’s difficult and onerous to clear land now. Offsets are required, but where do you get offsets in a shire that’s already 85 per cent forested?

“That day particularly was a very bad day for fire conditions. Resources were very stretched - the volunteers did a great job.”

The fire has been contained but is not under control and DFES says there is still the possibility of flare-ups and embers being blown over containment lines, causing spot fires.

The wind will be east to south-east this evening and overnight and DFES warns if the fire in Kin Kin breaks containment lines, homes to the north could be threatened by fire.

Residents in the area have been urged to evacuate or prepare to defend their homes.

The same warning has been issued for people living near Andrew State Forest, specifically the intersection of Austin Road and Drew Road, and Cardac State Forest, specifically the intersection of Cardac Road and Dwyer Road.

Residents are advised to evacuate and head for Manjimup via the Muir Highway, Wheatley Coast Road or South West Highway.

Tamm Road, Kin Kin Road and tracks within Kin Kin State Forest have been closed.

The fire, which was started by lightning strikes on Tuesday afternoon, has burnt through 1280 hectares.

The Department of Fire and Emergency Services said if embers breached containment lines, spot fires could threaten homes and lives to the north.

Winds are currently blowing from the south-east and are expected to move south-south-east this afternoon.

The fire is sending smoke in a northerly direction over the Muir Highway.

Shire of Manjimup volunteer fire fighters are doing their best to keep the blaze under control.

The West Australian

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