Bushfires in Sydney, New South Wales

Very little rain in the last month or two, temperatures of 30°C or more and wind. Together they are the three ingredients for bushfires as I explained in my post Fire Safety in Australia: Prepare, stay and defend or go early.

Sadly I have to return to this subject again, it’s been a particularly tough week for New South Wales. It all started with a bizarre fire that jumped from car to car destroying 47 vehicles parked at Sydney Olympic Park.

It seems some doughnut brained idiot may have been responsible when he (or she) tossed a cigarette butt onto the grass. What started off as a grass fire ended up in something much worse.

But that, unfortunately, was nothing compared with what was to follow.

Sydney bushfires

No matter where you live in the world, I’m sure you’ve heard of the fires that are raging around Sydney right now. Already 200 homes or more have been lost in what has been described as an “unparalleled” emergency, these are the worst bushfires that New South Wales has seen for 45 years.

So far one man has lost his life trying to defend his home and there are obvious concerns for the safety of others in the area. Firefighters have admitted that it is almost impossible for them to stop this without the help of rain and their concern is that two or three fires may join together to form one “mega-fire”.

Not long ago I wrote about the residents of Charleville praying for rain; that is now what the people in New South Wales are also praying for.

Rain

Tonight, this is how it looked at around 9:15 PM. Here’s the location of the bushfires that are causing the most concern, they are mainly in the Blue Mountains. You’ll see that I have marked Richmond in a blue circle to act as your reference point.

Bushfires MapCourtesy of Unorthodox

Now, here’s a radar image of the rainfall in the area, this time I have marked Richmond in a red circle…

Rain MapCourtesy of BOM.

It’s oh so close, but frustratingly I fear that this rain is falling a few kilometres south of where it is really needed.

Bushfire season has got off to a bad start and not only are we praying for rain, but we are also praying for everyone’s safety. To find out more about bushfires, please read Bushfires in Australia: What Are the Risks?

Update: Within five days of writing this post, all bushfires in the areas mentioned had been brought under control.

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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Becci October 22, 2013, 6:58 am | Link

    It’s very sad and this is the first time we have experienced bush fires so close since arriving just over a year ago, what is amazing is the community spirit here where we live in Tanilba Bay there have been fund raisers where all money is going to those who lost their houses last Sunday ( 5 properties ) in our local area and more just down the road I am in awe of our fantastic fire fighters and pray for those who are all affected

    • BobinOz October 22, 2013, 2:15 pm | Link

      Yes, the communal spirit is just amazing here in Australia, I saw it for myself in Brisbane during the floods. Those fundraisers will probably spread nationally at some point to help out everybody who has lost their homes, I’m pretty sure of that.

      The firefighters, as you say, are simply awesome. Stay safe Becci, and let’s hope these bushfires are put out soon.

    • Tim October 25, 2013, 8:37 am | Link

      There’s the same community spirit here in Tassie following the bush fires last summer. I went on a bush fire cleanup day and there were loads of events organised with collections at my work and sponsored bbqs everywhere.

      Good luck to all that are affected by the fires.

      Tim

      • BobinOz October 25, 2013, 6:47 pm | Link

        News today is that the firies seem to have the worst of it under control now, although they still expect it will take a couple of weeks before they can completely put them out.

        Hopefully the worst is over. I’m sure the volunteer cleanup squads will be busy this weekend.

        Cheers, Bob

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