JOAN Bowman had yesterday planned on sleeping in the new extension to her home for the first time.
Located near Cemetery Hill Road, not far from the main area of the fire, Ms Bowman was one of a number of people forced to watch from a distance as plumes of black smoke descended upon her home.
She had fled her home as soon as she saw smoke in the near distance.
However it was not until about an hour later that she received an SMS alert notifying her of the approaching fire.
“I just saw the smoke coming over the trees and jumped straight in the car,” Ms Bowman said.
“But the alert didn’t come through until I was long gone.”
Early reports indicated her home had avoided the blaze, but there was still a lingering air of uncertainty.
Ms Bowman was also left questioning the effectiveness of the alert system, when she was able to watch the fire come agonisingly close to her home before she received the message.
“We didn’t get the message until about 4.30pm, well after the threat of fire was there. We were lucky to get away,” she said.