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fredzfrog

How do we sleep while our beds are burning - Victoria ablaze

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So, what a day this has been.

 

Ohh. Hey guys, long time no see, is that a new tatt? Looks good! Ok, back to the post.

 

Today i left home (in moe, vic) and headed to woodside in the south for work.

After an hour onsite, the smoke from a nearby (30k away) fire turned from a southerly progression to over our site, followed by strong winds. Being the site is in the middle of a dry grass paddock for a km in any direction, i thought it pertinant to gtfo, but because of smoke and unable to locate where the fire was/heading, instead opted to travel to sale (hi cummings! :p).

 

Once in sale, I then headded to traralgon and am staying at a mates folks place. Coincidentaly, he is now stuck in moe, half an hour away, with all local oads between cut off due to the fires.

 

Fark, so fustrating being so close to home, and unable to get there.

 

Thankfully, theres been no reported incidents of family or friends being injured or worse, so i'm mightily thankful for that.

 

I hear theres some fires in SA too. How bad are they?

 

Remember folks, have a fire plan and get out early. :)

I'll try and update ya'll later today. G'night!

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Just Curious, i dont live in bush a fire area, but i get the feeling that the warning are over zeolous since Black saturday? especially today.

 

I dont really know, but it feels like it listening to 774 ABC melbourne.

 

What do people think? i know we have to do our best to avoid these, but how far? And all the warnings are kind of meaning less in alot of ways, like they where written by lawyers so if anything did go wrong listening to advice they would not be liabale, yet they still have given advice. Like "Watch and Act" OR "you must leave if it is safe to do so"

 

I worry with all the warnings over what maybe lesser fires, might occur a "boy who cried wolf" Scenario.

 

If you keep shouting out wrnings over minor fires, when that real big one happens.. people become complacent.

 

What are your thoughts?

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It is a fair comment, same thing happens with cyclone warnings.

 

Fires are possibly even more unpredictable than cyclones though, we had one here last week that was just a grass fire when called in. By the time the fireys got to it it was a raging inferno that damaged several homes.

 

Fredz, good to see you, the SA fires are pretty bad it seems, my family in the hills are having a sleepless night of it.

 

Cheers

Edited by chrisg

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Over zelous? I think it may appear like that, but when everyone wants to leave at the last moment, traffic chaos ensues. Its more making sure people can be safe, and utilising the available infrustructure while it is safe to do so. Also helps to eventually clear roads when cfa needs to do their manovers.

 

So yeah, may seem too much, but when the shit hits the fan, everyone wants to go everywhere.

 

That being said, the highway connecting the towns is this morning closed in 1 direction, and speed restricted (60kph) in the other.

Thats going to really cause problems and fustrations for people trying to get home.

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Just Curious, i dont live in bush a fire area, but i get the feeling that the warning are over zeolous since Black saturday? especially today.

No.

 

Living up the north of Melbourne (near the airport), we had plenty of spot fires springing up near us.

 

My sister who lives up Mickleham ended up packing up the dogs and putting their two horses in the float and moved to a neighbours property who had a better fire plan, a full(ish) dam and pumps. The fires sprang up so fast she was caught, initially told to stay as it seemed to be past her but then the winds changed and spot fires sprung up around her.

 

She, along with her neighbours still can't leave this morning as there are fires around that way still not under control.

 

The urban fringe is expanding up this way with Craigiburn and many new suburbs surrounding which were all under threat.

 

It's been really strange to see so many fires springing up around my area yesterday and. I am definitely not living in the bush.

Edited by The Tick

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Hey tick, stay safe mate :)

Should have passed that sentiment to you actually.

 

I'm fine and am not in any danger. It's my sister I am worried about.

 

They are pretty much stuck now. They have one road out and that is being blocked by CFA as they deal with the fire that way. At least they have trucks nearby.

 

Around them they can see fires that should be out springing back up again.

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Just Curious, i dont live in bush a fire area, but i get the feeling that the warning are over zeolous since Black saturday? especially today.

 

I dont really know, but it feels like it listening to 774 ABC melbourne.

 

What do people think? i know we have to do our best to avoid these, but how far? And all the warnings are kind of meaning less in alot of ways, like they where written by lawyers so if anything did go wrong listening to advice they would not be liabale, yet they still have given advice. Like "Watch and Act" OR "you must leave if it is safe to do so"

 

I worry with all the warnings over what maybe lesser fires, might occur a "boy who cried wolf" Scenario.

 

If you keep shouting out wrnings over minor fires, when that real big one happens.. people become complacent.

 

What are your thoughts?

My thoughts are that because you don't live in or near the bush, you don't understand what happens when there is an alert.

 

On black saturday, so many people died, not because there was no early warning system, but because so many people tried to stay and save their homes. People got stuck on roads leaving the areas because they left it too late.

 

On the morning of Black Saturday, no one expected as many fires as we had, they are unpredictable, fires move fast and fire fighters can't control the wind, which makes things even harder, a fire can be heading away from a town one minute and rushing towards it the next.

 

I knew a few people who died on Black Saturday, came close to dying or lost their homes and none of them were expecting it. Early warning systems save lives, not because they alert people to the fires, but because they alert people to the possibility of fires heading their way, better being over-prepared than under-prepared, especially when it can only take 1 minute for a fire to swing around and start threatening houses.

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My thoughts are that because you don't live in or near the bush, you don't understand what happens when there is an alert.

 

On black saturday, so many people died, not because there was no early warning system, but because so many people tried to stay and save their homes. People got stuck on roads leaving the areas because they left it too late.

 

On the morning of Black Saturday, no one expected as many fires as we had, they are unpredictable, fires move fast and fire fighters can't control the wind, which makes things even harder, a fire can be heading away from a town one minute and rushing towards it the next.

 

I knew a few people who died on Black Saturday, came close to dying or lost their homes and none of them were expecting it. Early warning systems save lives, not because they alert people to the fires, but because they alert people to the possibility of fires heading their way, better being over-prepared than under-prepared, especially when it can only take 1 minute for a fire to swing around and start threatening houses.

 

+1

 

Teop: Imagine a cyclone, that can teleport a clone of itself 10 - 20km (spotting), within the space of ten minutes.

When people leave their properties late, they are in a high risk of crashing (smoke can make visibility tiny), as well as being overtaken by the flames, or caught simply from the radiant heat.

 

They are zealous about it now, because so many people decided they wanted to defend their homes last time.

 

Personally, I think if you don't have a dam, and a self-sufficient pump system as a bear minimum, then you should leave if you are in one of those very high risk areas.

 

On black saturday, there were fires spotting 20kms away. There were over 400 fires! There was the most loss of life in a western nation to fires in nearly 100 years! The fires were so fast, that the majority of people either survived with superficial burns, or died.

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Yep. At the workplace here, the fire was 40k away, but headed elsewhere, 10 mins later, the wind had swung hard straight for us, smoke filling the air. We left.

 

And i'm back here again today. Clear skys, cool breeze, and a stoopid sun that wont stop moving so i can stay in a shady spot.

Edited by fredzfrog

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Sounds like you are being a smart boy Fredz. Better to be safe than sorry, and heading out early is absolutely the way to go.

 

While the Black Saturday fires were awful, don't forget the Canberra fires not all that many years before and the huge loss of property and life back then. That firestorm flared up and overtook KILOMETERS of area in literally minutes.

 

While it was a rare and freaky event, the fact that fires can be so insanely quick also makes getting out early a good thing.

 

Keep safe tick and Fredz and everybody else down in the burny states!

Edited by Chaos.Lady

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I once saw a crown fire (one in tops of trees) go 400m up a hill in probably about 5 seconds, well it seemed like 5 seconds, it was very fast. It even frightened the local fire fighters. I suggested the fire fighters move their truck a few minutes earlier and they said their truck was fine, so I pointed out there was an awful lot of smoke coming from their tires. Just after the fire fighters moved their truck, the fire jumped the road via the tops of the trees, tor through where their truck was parked and shot up the hill while we all stood back flabbergasted at it's ferocity.

 

Luckily there were no properties where that fire headed, out into the bush behind my old farm. It burnt for six weeks until it rained for two weeks and put it out. I'd fought quite a few fires before that one, but I'd never seen anything like that crown fire and conditions have been much worse in the last decade. Western Australia is like a tinderbox lately, with thick scrub surprisingly now 10 feet high in many places from the late rain. WA has had just a couple of fires with some unfortunate loss of homes in the hills above Perth. Victoria looked pretty dry when I was flying over. I hope everyone will be safe, and also their property and especially their animals.

 

My house in WA is right opposite bush. I'd just grab my wife, dog, and maybe my PC, HDD's and a couple good books. I wouldn't even attempt to save my house, not worth it when the weather is like this as it's just too dangerous. I used to do volunteer fire management a long time ago, guys and gals today have way more courage than me and I used to think I was pretty tough and experienced. If I saw an opportunity that was safe to help save someone else's property I would help, but I'm insured so I consider myself a lesser priority and frankly my home is not defensible IMHO.

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Just Curious, i dont live in bush a fire area, but i get the feeling that the warning are over zeolous since Black saturday? especially today.

 

I dont really know, but it feels like it listening to 774 ABC melbourne.

 

What do people think? i know we have to do our best to avoid these, but how far? And all the warnings are kind of meaning less in alot of ways, like they where written by lawyers so if anything did go wrong listening to advice they would not be liabale, yet they still have given advice. Like "Watch and Act" OR "you must leave if it is safe to do so"

 

I worry with all the warnings over what maybe lesser fires, might occur a "boy who cried wolf" Scenario.

 

If you keep shouting out wrnings over minor fires, when that real big one happens.. people become complacent.

 

What are your thoughts?

My thoughts are that because you don't live in or near the bush, you don't understand what happens when there is an alert.

 

On black saturday, so many people died, not because there was no early warning system, but because so many people tried to stay and save their homes. People got stuck on roads leaving the areas because they left it too late.

 

On the morning of Black Saturday, no one expected as many fires as we had, they are unpredictable, fires move fast and fire fighters can't control the wind, which makes things even harder, a fire can be heading away from a town one minute and rushing towards it the next.

 

I knew a few people who died on Black Saturday, came close to dying or lost their homes and none of them were expecting it. Early warning systems save lives, not because they alert people to the fires, but because they alert people to the possibility of fires heading their way, better being over-prepared than under-prepared, especially when it can only take 1 minute for a fire to swing around and start threatening houses.

 

I listen to ABC 774 alot (like all day at work) and the week leading up to black Saturday there where alot of warnings about fire danger and that it was extreme, i actually felt at the time it was a excessive, because it seemed everyday that week was fire danger and i wondered "are people to just leave there homes when the weather is hot?" Or do they just put it down as another warning with no fire? did they become complacent? I dont know.

Because I felt there was adequate reporting of the possible dangers before balck saturday on the ABC, all week, constant warnings. (that dosnt mean ABC might have got it better, even John Faine agrees with that, and even now there are problems, especially regarding the simplicity of the messages, like "stay inside" instead of "actively Fight" which seem to get mixed opinions from all parts)

 

I kind of blamed the blood suckers on the commercial stations for not running the same warnings for those who do not listen to the ABC, which i felt was the real issue. Once the fires happened they where all over the place. (then again if you live in those areas maybe it is your responsibility to listen to the appropriate channels during those conditions.

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Because I felt there was adequate reporting of the possible dangers before balck saturday on the ABC, all week, constant warnings. (that dosnt mean ABC might have got it better, even John Faine agrees with that, and even now there are problems, especially regarding the simplicity of the messages, like "stay inside" instead of "actively Fight" which seem to get mixed opinions from all parts)

 

I kind of blamed the blood suckers on the commercial stations for not running the same warnings for those who do not listen to the ABC, which i felt was the real issue. Once the fires happened they where all over the place. (then again if you live in those areas maybe it is your responsibility to listen to the appropriate channels during those conditions.

 

Many people in fire prone areas are either part of the RFS or know and see RFS warnings in their communities. The ABC is not the only channel to get the message about fires and fire danger out there. The government is using SMS alerts and other forms of communication to communities that are at high risk. That's in addition to the work the RFS do.

 

There have been ads on the telly recently reminding people to have a fire plan and how important it is as well.

 

Yes, some of the responsibility definitely lies on people who live in the area to do the right thing and be aware of the alerts etc, but I can't see that it was to do with listening to the commercial stations and not hearing the warnings. There were warnings aplenty for people. I THINK (and I'm happy to be wrong here, but it's what I remember) that it was the "stay and defend" rather than the "bolt like a scared horse" culture that caused so much loss of life. Which is why they now focus on getting people out.

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It's a balanced decision and some have and probably will in the future make it the wrong way.

 

I'm of the opinion that with fire discretion is the better part of valor, beyond turning off the aircon there is not a massive amount a home owner can do really. We had one explode at the back fence a few years back, very localised but a garden hose was not going to cut it. Like so many of them that was kids and matches.

 

SMS warnings can be a bit of a joke though, some friends in Victoria received one this week, about an hour after they had evacuated after warnings from the radio. It's not a guaranteed instant message service, especially when the load is high.

 

Cheers

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Warning messages are total bullshit, if they are what people consider to be 'bushfire preparation".

 

'Black Saturday' death toll didn't happen, as someone suggested above, because too many people stayed in their houses. It happened because too many people didn't know how to stay in their houses, or when it is appropriate to do so. And there's absolutely zero possibility that any "imminent danger" warning message can address that shortfall of awareness and preparedness.

 

If you live in a fire-prone area the time to prepare for bushfires is pretty much wintertime, well ahead of fire season. And 'preparing' (if it entails staying to protect your property) means ensuring that you are self-sufficient in every way, right down to fuel-driven generators and firefighting pumps, and an adequate water store. Coz, in a major fire event, you'll more often than not lose your mains power, and with it your water pressure. Even if it's an urban area.

 

Even with all that, some properties simply aren't defendable. Many, many of the properties in that 'green fringe' outer-metropolitan area that was affected by those fires fall into this category. If there's a fucken gum tree hanging over the house roof, the house is gonna burn.

 

 

Those who aren't gonna stay and defend shouldn't be leaving when they get warning that a bushfire is on it's way toward them. That's too late. Time to leave is the day before a high/extreme fore risk day. Check the stats regarding how many folk died in cars on Black Saturday.

 

 

 

And peeps should get their head around the indisputable fact that that'n wasn't, by any means, the "worst" bushfire we've ever had. It's just the one which had the biggest death toll. Death toll which wouldn't happen if peeps stopped this ridiculous practice of living in fore-prone areas without ensuring that they are ready, and mentally prepared, for when fire comes.

 

 

But we haven't learned. There are even more people living in those green fringe outer areas nowadays, and they're just as unprepared as the folk before them were. But they've got SMS messages. For all the good that'll do!

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Wow.

 

that video apparently was going out to a blaze near the local paper making plant.

Edited by fredzfrog

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Videoclip there, fredzfrog, is pumper truck from Leongatha trying to get across to Maryvale, where the pulp plant is located and where another fire was threatening. It's on Strzelecki Highway, on the flatlands just a bit south of Morwell near Driffield, where the road comes out of timbered areas into grasslands. Truck obviously hasn't even made it into Morwell, let alone to the pulp mill north of it.

 

Princes Highway was closed from Moe to Traralgon that day, and Strzelecki Highway was closed from about Mirboo North to Morwell. Was about half a dozen fires on the go in the area at the time. Interesting to see the tractors and utes etc at side of road near the end of the clip. Those will most likely be local farmers/graziers/whatever, cruising around with their own private firefighting equipment. You don't hear it talked about in the media, but often during serious wildfire events which are threatening properties, you'll find a 'local army' of such people, protecting properties and assisting volunteer crews which have become lost/disoriented negotiating local roads they are unfamiliar with.

 

Many are the properties which have been saved because a Landcruiser with trailer on carrying 1000 litre tank and Honda pump has come across a CFA or somesuch crew (from somewhere other side of the State), and let them know "there's 3 houses down that track. you mob go to the one with driveway just past the first corner and we'll go check the one a coupla hundred yards further on."

Edited by Catweazle

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That one just looked like a minor though large area grass fire to me from the visible film.

 

Of course with a decent wind it would quickly be a different kettle of fried fish.

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Videoclip there, fredzfrog, is pumper truck from Leongatha trying to get across to Maryvale, where the pulp plant is located and where another fire was threatening. It's on Strzelecki Highway, on the flatlands just a bit south of Morwell near Driffield, where the road comes out of timbered areas into grasslands. Truck obviously hasn't even made it into Morwell, let alone to the pulp mill north of it.

 

Princes Highway was closed from Moe to Traralgon that day, and Strzelecki Highway was closed from about Mirboo North to Morwell. Was about half a dozen fires on the go in the area at the time.

 

Didn't you even read the op?

I live in the area.

I also posted that vid at what, 2.30am? 98% asleep at that point, lol.

Still, having to drive through all that? dayum!

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I live in the area.

Me too. Grew up in Leongatha, spent time all over South and East Gippsland before settling in Sale 30 years ago. Got kids and grandkids living all over the region. And spent lots of time over the years confronting fires at various places.

 

Which is kinda why I added further detail of information, for the benefit of folks reading. Touchy much? LOL

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