Monday, February 23, 2009

The Hills are burning again

Around 3 O'clock today my sister called to tell me the Hills near home were on fire. Ironically this one started close to where the last disaster fires of Ash Wednesday in 1983 also started. At that stage it was burning south around 300 metres from my ex-wifes house and 500 metres south of the old family home.

My boss who lives up the road from me decided that it was better to be safe than sorryso we left work to head home in case we came under ember attack.

I'm home now, the wind has swung from northly to westerly and it is now being pushed east towards Belgrave Heights and Belrave South. Once again the CFA is on the scene but so far this one is still out of control.

My daughter is bringing their cats around here later on because at the moment we are safe. I'll keep everyone posted again.

It seems that the messages of two weeks ago have been heeded with many callers to the radio stations saying they have decided to be evacuate early.

The CFA have just confirmed that one house has just been lost in Belgrave South. Now this is true bush living not unlike Kinglake and Marysville which were both wiped off the map two weeks ago. Houses are thich through that area so I fear we should brace for more losses.

Update 5:25pm. Just heard that two firefighters have been injured and a fire truck damaged.

Update 25th February.
Here is a link to an interview with Upper Gully CFA Captain Pete "Mudguts" Smith aired on 3 AW this morning. These three blokes were very lucky.


Anonymous said...

Certainly know how it feels Laurie, and still fires burning in my area, but thankfully under control.

Do hope they are brought under control tonight and you and everyone in that area keep safe and well.

I went to the memorial service in town yesterday. It was just such a moving and special experience. A wonderful way to commemorate the lives lost and also to give thanks to all the wonderful people involved in the firefighting and helpers/volunteers/police/emergencyservices etc.

Was truly inspiring and hopefully has helped those grieving in some small way.


Bear said...

My thoughts are with you mate... stay safe and keep an eye on those around you.

Loz said...

Hi Jen - I guess we wait for Friday now.

Bear - things eased overnight and that fire is now under control, but we've got another hot spell coming up later in the week again.

Marty! said...

This was the sort of news I was dreading but thankfully things are under control for now. I read that 400 new fires sprang up around the state on Monday. It is hard to comprehend the extent of these fires and the huge area that has been burnt out. Fingers crossed for Friday. Although people are evacuating it would be awful to see places like Warburton go up in flames or fires in the Dandenongs to flare up - any populated area really but these seem to be most at risk for Friday.

Loz said...

Hi Marty!
Yes it is dreadful. I have couch grass in my front yard that breaks like corn flakes when it's walked on.
Thankfully today is cooler and more humid so the Dandenongs and Warburton fires may be damped down before the forecast horror conditions on Friday.
We were lucky in Upwey that three firefighters didn't lose their lives. I've updated the post to include a link to an interview with the Upper Gully fire captain.