Moment eerie pink glow exploded into inferno
LANA Estreich didn't realise it was time to go until her daughter asked her about the pink glow in the distance.
It was then the Stanthorpe mother packed her nine-year-old daughter, Isabella, into their silver hatchback and fled for their lives.
In a matter of minutes, that pink glow had turned into a raging inferno which came centimetres from engulfing their home of 16 years.
Like an act of God, the fire miraculously jumped over the house and torched the awnings, but left their precious possessions untouched, Lana said.
"She (Isabella) spotted it out the window and said 'Mum, why is it pink?'" Lana told The Sunday Mail.
"I didn't even know there was a fire there until we started getting these messages from the fire service. And then I thought 'who's pulling my frigging leg'."
The worst of the damage on Friday night included a cabin that was destroyed, a few broken windows and some other household items around the yard of their Caves Rd property.
Lana's father passed away several years ago and she said perhaps he was watching over them last night.
"The fire didn't come anywhere near his motorcycle - there's not a speck of ash on it. That's eerie," she said.
But the fight isn't over yet, with fears in the community that the wind could again change tonight bringing embers raining down into the treetops.
"We've packed the car again and we're just sitting here very quietly waiting to see if we need to get out of here again," Lana said.
Lana's next door neighbour Tony Southgate says he stayed at his house on Friday night until he was dragged out about 8pm, the fire bearing down on his doorstep.
Mr Southgate said he decided to stay in an effort to save about $100,000 worth of paintings that were in his shed.
He was unsuccessful. They were all turned to ash.
"I've been collecting all my life," he said.
Mr Southgate's wife lives with dementia and after putting her to bed for the night his focus turned to trying to save their prized possession.
"When I started putting her to bed it was just a glow and the wind had dropped," he said.
"And the next thing I know 'bang, bang, bang, move now!
"We'd only been here three months so we had all of our boxes of books, clothes, all gone."