In answer to woodford, the site has been regularly slashed and mowed, which while it might not seem so at first glance, prevented further serious damage. There was also an asset protection zone outside the fence. As the site has the remains of the colliery buildings scattered across, some areas are difficult to maintain. No buildings were lost, the wooden passenger stock and locomotives survived, along with some steel-bodied freight and industrial rollingstock.
The other issue affecting the site is that it is surrounded by an Endangered Environmental Community, namely the Lower Hunter Spotted Gum/Ironbark Forest, which places heavy restrictions on any tree-felling or other actions.
The stainless steel cars which were destroyed were not in a heavily vegetated area, but on the entry road to the carriage shed when they came under ember attack. The carriage shed was barely saved, as it came under ember attack, with upholstery fabric ignited by embers penetrating the eaves. Fortunately the Secretary was on site, in refuge in the mining museum, with keys to allow entry so the firies could extinguish that blaze before it destroyed the shed and contents.
On Tuesday evening, the firies were confident they had things in hand. Come Wednesday, the high winds and extremely low humidity made the task of fighting the fire extremely difficult, as it flared and ran so quickly. Board members who were only 3-4 kilometres away were unable to reach the site, as the speed of the fire meant that Leggetts Drive was quickly closed to all traffic except fire vehicles.
The museum board has been heartened by the expressions of support and offers of assistance from other groups and the rail industry. The major hurdle is ensuring that members and the public can enter the site confident that there is no risk from hazardous materials. Once that risk can be managed, in conjunction with the city council who are site landlords, the board can look to rehabilitation and reopening.