Sunday, February 8, 2009

Mother Nature's Fury

Yesterday in Melbourne, the temperature hit 46 degrees Celsius which is about 115 degrees Fahrenheit. Hot winds howled through the trees and the oppressive heat slapped you in the face each time you went outdoors. Our children had been invited to two birthday parties. While we attended both parties and conversed with our neighbours and friends about the awful heat and the influx of ants we've all had in our houses, people in the rural communities of our state were quite literally running for their lives and fighting to save their property.

It wasn't until the early hours of this morning that Melbournians and the rest of Australia began to understand what had unfolded in rural Victoria yesterday and last night. Entire towns have been decimated. At the current count 84 lives have been lost with more bodies expected to be found in the rubble that remains. More than 700 homes have been destroyed. Even now as I type this there are dozens of fires still raging across the state threatening more homes and more lives. This is a disaster whose immensity we still do not fully know.

Our family has been glued to television screens and radio broadcasts today listening as more and more tales of horror are told. The pictures of the devastation are unbelievable. The stories of survival phenomenal and the stories of those who perished are absolutely heart wrenching.

So tonight, please say a prayer for those who have lost so much, for those who remain under threat and for the heroes of the Country Fire Authority (CFA) that they may have the strength to carry on fighting the blazes and saving people's homes and lives.

To read more about the fires visit any of the following links:
http://www.theage.com.au/national/death-toll-rises-from-bushfires-20090208-80jv.html?page=-1

http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25024630-601,00.html

http://www.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&ll=-37.09024,145.360107&spn=5.467626,6.778564&z=7&msid=102713443485350180116.0004625c0e5a723331061

5 comments:

Scintilla @ Bell'Avventura said...

This is appalling.

Annelise said...

I am so sorry. That is a horrible act of nature taking place there. Please keep me posted.

MissCaron said...

I've been watching the news about all the fires. Hope y'all are alright. Be safe.

Annelise said...

The news here is saying they were started by someone!

suzinoz said...

Scintilla--It is appalling and the news is getting worse before it gets better. Luckily the weather has improved a bit and the fire fighters seem to be making inroads with some of the blazes.

MissCaron--Thanks, we are safe. The fires are in rural areas a few hours away from us.

Annelise--They have declared several areas crime scenes as they are keen to investigate the source of the fires and are considering many of the blazes suspicious. There has been no confirmation of arson as the cause yet.