ONE house has been completely destroyed and another four have been damaged in a ferocious fire at Charmhaven that flared on New Year's Eve and is believed to have been deliberately lit.
Rural Fire Service Central Coast and Lake Macquarie district superintendent Viki Campbell said the fire that has blackened 400 hectares and will continue to flare internally for weeks has also destroyed nine outbuildings.
"We did lose one house but most importantly, given the nature of the fire, there were no serious injuries, no fatalities, and 278 homes were defended," superintendent Campbell said.
The Newcastle Herald has confirmed the house was insured and the three occupants are safe and have found alternative accommodation.
Superintendent Campbell declined to comment on the cause of the fire.
On Wednesday a NSW Police Media spokesperson said the fire is believed to have been deliberately lit.
Facebook posts and social media comments from the Charmhaven area claimed two young people smoking near Wallarah Creek were responsible for the blaze that flared before noon on December 31.
"I personally don't look at the social media posts too much," superintendent Campbell said.
"If people are speculating on social media then that's their business."
A Facebook post on December 31 said the names of a male and female had been passed on to police.
Superintendent Campbell said an RFS specialist investigator, one of three in the district, was preparing a report about the cause and origin of the fire which remained on "contained" status today.
"I can say it started north of Wallarah Creek, jumped the creek and jumped the highway," she said.
"The RFS will investigate the cause and origin and the police will undertake any investigations that they may need to do. For any fire where we have a cause like downed power lines then we don't investigate, but where it's undetermined we investigate and determine a cause and origin."
The destroyed home is believed to have been in Birdwood Drive near Wallarah Creek.
Wyong MP David Harris said he was aware of the Facebook posts about the possible fire origin but was attempting to seek further information from the office of Police and Emergency Services Minister David Elliott.
Mr Elliott on New Year's Eve said he would return to Australia from a European trip after criticism he flew out early this week despite warnings of likely catastrophic fires in part of the state.
A second fire in the western Lake Macquarie area late on New Year's Eve was started when power lines arced following the arrival of strong southerly winds.