Left Menu
Development News Edition

Military moves in to help mass-scale evacuation from Australian bushfires

Military moves in to help mass-scale evacuation from Australian bushfires
Representative image Image Credit:

Tens of thousands of holidaymakers raced to evacuate popular seaside towns on Australia's east coast on Wednesday, fleeing ahead of advancing bushfires, as military ships and helicopters planned missions to rescue thousands more trapped by the blazes. Long queues formed outside supermarkets and petrol stations near high-danger areas as both residents and tourists sought supplies to either bunker down or escape, but many shops and fuel stations had already run out of supplies.

Major roads were closed due to fire risks, leaving motorists only a handful of escape routes causing lengthy traffic jams. More than 50,000 people were without power and some towns had no access to drinking water after catastrophic fires ripped through the region on Dec. 31 sending the sky blood red and destroying towns.

Authorities have urged a mass exodus from several towns on Australia's southeast coast, an area that is hugely popular in the current summer peak holiday season, warning that extreme heat forecast for the weekend will further stoke raging fires. "It is vital, critical," NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance said on Australian Broadcasting Corp television. "We need everybody to leave. We are going to face a worse day on Saturday than what we have been through."

Huge bushfires have been burning for weeks across Australia, with new blazes sparked into life almost daily by extremely hot and windy conditions in bushland left tinder-dry after a three-year drought. Fuelled by searing temperatures and high winds, more than 200 fires are now burning across the southeastern states of New South Wales and Victoria, threatening several towns.

Seven people have been killed in New South Wales state alone since Monday, including a volunteer firefighter, officials said, with one person still missing. The death toll for this year's fire season is 15 in New South Wales alone.

One person has died in Victoria state this week. Five military helicopters and two naval ships were en-route to the south coast to back up firefighters, bring in supplies like water and diesel and evacuate people, the Australian Defence Force said.

One ship was headed for the coastal town of Mallacoota in Victoria, where around 4,000 people have been stranded on the beachfront since New Year's Eve when they watched much of the town burn down. The navy rescue team will include 1.6 tonnes of water and paramedics, officials said.

The only road in and out of Mallacoota was expected to remain blocked for several weeks. The state's Country Fire Authority said smoke was hampering efforts to identify how many homes have been destroyed across the eastern region of the state.

"We can't even get fire trucks into some of these communities," CFA Chief Officer Steve Warrington said. "This is not over by a long way." Temperatures are forecast to soar above 40 degrees Celsius (104°Fahrenheit) along the south coast on Saturday, bringing the prospect of renewed firefronts to add to the around 200 current blazes.

Fires this season have already destroyed nearly 1,300 homes in the state, including 381 homes destroyed on the south coast just this week, the NSW Rural Fire Service said. Bushfires are normal for Australia in the summer but this fire season has been one of the worst on record, putting pressure on Prime Minister Scott Morrison's conservative climate change policies.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Download The Devdiscourse News App for Latest News.



Top 10 Fake News, Myths and Realities on 2019 Novel Coronavirus COVID 19

With nearly 1500 deaths by January 14 and around 65,000 infections in China, the Novel Coronavirus 2019 has become one of the worst health epidemics of the 21st Century. However, 8,573 people have been cured but the rumor mongers are a...

Handling fake news Infodemic in time of Coronavirus epidemic

Social media has provided a platform where everybody can disseminate his her views without any supervision. Its excellent if the message is genuine but misinformation is equally disastrous. Health is such a topic where every Tom and Harry c...

Sentiment Analysis on Budget 2020: Long shot for solution to economic worries?

Industries and individuals alike had high expectations from the government to take tangible steps but the budget 2020 seems to have failed expectations....

How can technology help the future of mobility?

More than a billion people or one-third of the global rural population lacked access to all-season roads and transport services in 2016, subsequently hindering the socio-economic development....


Latest News

Nigeria's state oil company and partners spent $360 mln on Delta cleanup

Nigerias state oil company and its joint venture partners have spent 360 million on cleaning up the Niger Delta oil heartland in the past two years, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation NNPC said on Monday, but locals said little wor...

Delhi's Maharishi Valmiki Hospital suspends biometric attendance due to coronavirus threat

The administration of Maharishi Valmiki Hospital has suspended biometric attendance in wake of the coronavirus threat. All officers are now required to mark their attendance in a register.In view of coronavirus threat, the biometric attenda...

Shiv Sena leader thrashes molester in Mumbai

In a video that went viral, Shiv Sena leader Nitin Nandgaonkar thrashed a man who has allegedly molested many women at Matunga railway station in Mumbai. The man was identified as Rajiur Habibur Khan 32, who was arrested by the police on Ja...

''Cyanide'' Mohan gets lifer in 19th murder case

Notorious serial killer Cyanide Mohan has been sentenced to life imprisonment by acourt here for the murder of a 23-year old woman from Kasaragod district of Kerala in 2006, the 19th of the 20murder cases slapped against him. Sixth addition...

Give Feedback