Monday, 18 October, 2021


Australia Tells Thousands To Leave Homes As Bushfire Threatens Perth

Australia Tells Thousands To Leave Homes As Bushfire Threatens Perth A firefighter fighting a fire outside Wooroloo near Australia's fourth-biggest city Perth
Bennie Garza | 04 February, 2021, 09:14

"I could smell the fire and went out the back and the whole yard was filled with smoke, " said Melissa Stahl, 49, who received a text message telling her to evacuate.

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) estimated that insured bushfire losses during the accepted seasonal months reached nearly AU $2.34 billion a year ago, with more than 38,600 claims filed with insurers due to fire impacts from the season. Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) Commissioner Darren Klemm told CNN it was important that people didn't become complacent and kept abreast of updates.

Meanwhile, surrounding areas including Parkerville, Ellenbrook, Chidlow and Jane Brook have been told to leave if they are not prepared to fight the blaze.

The bush fire hit a population that had just been forced into a snap lockdown after a rare coronavirus case was detected in a man working in a quarantine hotel for arriving worldwide travellers.

The fire, which started on Monday, is burning about 30km (18.5 miles) east of central Perth.

Perth, which is in the state of Western Australia (WA), is in the middle of a coronavirus lockdown.

The winds were forecast to return to highs of 75km per hour later on Wednesday, potentially driving the blaze to new areas.

Evacuation warnings have been issued for communities north and north-west of Perth - including the suburbs of Shady Hills, Bullsbrook, The Vines and Aveley.

However, favourable weather could bring some respite with rains possible over the weekend and temperatures expected to drop to around 28 degree Celsius over the next few days from the mid-30s, authorities said.

WA Premier Mark McGowan has described the state as facing dual crises - "a unsafe fire emergency and a Covid-19 lockdown emergency".

However, an uncontrollable bushfire has razed about 30 homes in Perth on 2 February, reported CNA.

It's the largest bushfire seen close to Perth for a number of years, having now burned through 9,000 hectares of land and now the Wooroloo bushfire has a 100km perimeter.

Strong winds caused it to spread rapidly and made it "near impossible" for firefighters to control, an official said.

Six firefighters sustained minor injuries, Australian Broadcasting Corp reported.

"Western Australia has largely missed out on the rainfall in 2020 and conditions are very dry, with parts of the south and south west coasts expecting above normal fire conditions through summer", warned the Bushfires and Natural Hazards Central Resource Centre last December.

"You must shelter before the fire arrives, as the extreme heat will kill you well before the flames reach you", the latest warning said.

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