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Hey guys,

 

What's going on in Australia? It does not look good. Hoping they get control of the fires and everyone comes out safe!  

Edited by rcoultas62
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I have been keeping an eye on the Australia fires for over a week now, and it is disheartening. My thoughts are with all of you down under, and all I can offer is to know that people around the world are hoping the best for you all. 

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Thank you all very much. It is truly distressing here at the moment. I live quite a distance away from the fires, however the smoke haze here is causing many people respiratory problems. There have been countless acts of heroism, and, apart from the awful loss of life and property, it's estimated that around 500m animals (mostly native) have perished here in NSW alone.

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 Australians are renowned for their fortitude and resilience, but these are severely trying times for them. I lived there as a boy and they were the best years of my childhood. Australia will always have a place in my heart, and I feel great sorrow as this catastrophe engulfs such huge swathes of the country. All the very best to all of you from your British 'family'.

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Thanks for your kind thoughts from around the world.

I am also lucky enough to be away from these terrible fires but we do get the smoke when the wind is in the wrong direction.

 

A big thanks is in order to all of the folks who are involved fighting this disaster and helping those in need.

 

If you wish to keep up to date just go to YouTube and search for Sky News Australia, plenty of latest balanced news on this crisis.

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It is so great to see the response from all over the World and the best wishes offered,

 

We - here - in Queensland had our share of the fires a month ago and they came close to the Gold Coast.

 

I am particular sorry to see the plight of the people in  Mallacoota Victoria - and joint fires in the SE corner of New South Wales

In this area are very popular airfields for VFR weekend flyaways - and Malacoota was a favourite - because one stayed at Pub/Motel

we flew low over the Pub - cut the Engine 3 Times - and when we got landed - there was always someone from the pub to give you

a lift into town ---  Have look at the strip in Av2.

Also on that corner of OZ is airfields at Eden - Merimbula - Nowra - recently visited by Jack Sawyer - 

(@Jack - if you read this - almost the whole area you flew over - from CB to Nowra is on fire)

Edited by John Heaton
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Over here, in The Netherlands,  it's in the news every day too. I've been in Australia in 2018 and saw what fire can do with the landscape.

I wish everybody involved all the strength to counter these horrible fires and I hope everybody stays safe.

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I am in Penrith on western outskirts of Sydney. Reasonably close to a couple of large fires but all smoke here for a couple of months. Almost 49deg C yesterday, the hottest plaçe on earth we were told. News was a possibility of embers hitting our way but that did not eventuate. Nothing compared to what some (several) areas have been going through. Smoke has been at hazardous level for several weeks and my wife is an asthmatic.

As mentioned above, not only tragic loss of life but also millions of native fauna, some species gone forever. Not only stories of human heroism but even dogs have been reported as leading wild animals to safety.

The fire and dryness is a problem in itself, however the hot gusty winds often changing direction has caused havoc for the fire fighters., both volunteers and professional. I do not know how they have kept going for so long!.

 

It is good to know of support from our friends overseas.

 

Best wishes to all.

 

Cheers

gibo

Edited by gibo
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I flew forest fire suppression aircraft here in Canada for quite a few years of my career. One thing i noticed is that serious fire seasons seem to come in cycles - every 7-8 years though of course that's not carved in stone.

 

For example years that come to mind were 1979, 1980, 1988, 1995, 2003.....2016* (Fort McMurray fire*)....fires seemed to burn like crazy for long stretches -weeks or more. Then in 2008 & 2009 I flew well under 100 hours (on two types of aircraft as i was checked out on both), including spring training, as it rained all summer it seemed. Cycles  are probably a  little different depending what part of the country you're in and as Canada is a big place (to drive from one end of the country to the other is probably somewhere around 8000 km - depending on route).

 

*No shortage of 100,000+ acre fires happen most years only usually they are in the areas of lower population. Uncommon is a city is in the path of one but it is front page news when it happens of course.

 

Nothing scientific about this on my part but only an observation from being a participant. It's one of the reasons I put little stock in this climate change business as the climate is always changing and seems to run in cycles.

 

I flew both fixed and rotary aircraft on fires and it is challenging work. My last year doing fires was 2009.  It can also be rewarding when something you did might have made a difference. About 40-45 years ago i had a cousin (in-law) who got killed in Australia flying rotary on fires.  

Edited by porsche
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Please see this link for information about a Disaster Relief Fund Raiser project from DC3 Virtual Airways.

 

Sherm

Director Public Relations

www.dc3airways.net

 

 

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My thoughts go to all in Australia,

To show the severity, I live in Auckland NZ, yesterday afternoon the sky turned a very dull red colour, due to the smoke crossing the Tasman sea,  I have lived in Auckland for almost 60 years and never seen it anything like this before.

Best wishes

Bob

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I've seen hundreds of kangaroos escaping from fire in Facebook and the news

This is really sad and hard to believe

I hope this gets under control and won't cause more damage

Our prays are with Australia

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I feel for you. I really do.  I've only been to Oz once...2018. The experience is hard to describe. Simple wonderful. I'll never forget my time there. May God keep you safe.....Doug

Edited by W2DR
kant spel
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You all know I have a strong connection to Australia, why ever. And since we have travelled the country as a family last September, we all look at the news here in Germany and think of wildlife and animals lost. Surely we´ll donate something.

Interesting is any discussion about the multiple factors that come together enhancing the fires to a level not seen since 1788, if not in the last 40000 years.

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4 hours ago, Stillwater said:

Interesting is any discussion about the multiple factors that come together enhancing the fires to a level not seen since 1788, if not in the last 40000 years.

 

The largest fires in recorded history was the 1974 to 1975 bush fires. That one burned around 117 million hectares of land across Australia. This 2019 to 2020 has burned 6.3 million hectares so far, so this one is a long way off the fires in the mid 70s
You can see a lot of the recorded fires on this page:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bushfires_in_Australia

 

Here is another article I found comparing seasons in modern history
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7838193/How-current-bushfire-crisis-compares-biggest-blazes-Australias-history.html

Edited by Matthew Kane
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In 1974-75 the cost of the bush fires was estimated at $5million, which equated to roughly 117 million hectares.

Those bush fires were not nearly as intense as those that are currently underway and clearly the damage caused in the  6.3 million hectares to date is much more.

I suspect the 1974-75 fires burned in inaccessible areas and were allowed to burn themselves out rather than commit resources to fight them.

I simple case where comparisons are woefully inadequate.

In response to the OP, we are wondering what is going on as well. I will avoid the politically obvious but NZ should have a 24 watch on it's PM or she may be abducted a brought over here to replace our Ad Man (or we may just adjust our Constitution to allow NZ to absorb Australia and call it the West Island - not that they would want us :ph34r:). 
 

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On 1/4/2020 at 8:59 PM, John Heaton said:

the whole area you flew over - from CB to Nowra is on fire

That's sad John.  Really sad.  I wish I could somehow send ya'll the rain we've been getting.  I wish there was a way to pump seawater to the fires or something like that.  I hope they end soon as this is a huge tragedy.

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The truly astounding fact with many of these fires is that they have not occurred naturally (eg lightning), but are man-made. I think I saw that 186 firebugs have been caught.

Before Christmas, we had to evacuate (we live amongst forest, State Forest and National Park) as we were within the projected path of a nearby fire. While we were gone, 4 local fires were started near us... by arsonists.

 

We ended up safe, but to be sure, I took my main PC and backup drive, with all the flighsim stuff - gotta have priorities...

 

The scale of these fires is massive, partly because Australia is a reeaally big place. One benefit we enjoyed was kids coming home for Christmas to get some clean air. There had been smoke like dense fog for 6 weeks, then we got some clean Northerlies for a week, just locally in Coffs, during Chrissie\NY, and the kids wanted to breathe again.

Edited by ozboater
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I can feel the pain and worries of those in the path of fire and send my prayers their way.  Donating with the link posted by both Nick and Shermak was fast and easy.

 

Last year my family was evacuated from a huge fire in N Calif.  Luckily it stopped short of my house, but my best friends lost their house and other friends at least know someone personally that lost there home.  The entire town of Keswick near Shasta Lake is gone.  The town of Paradise near Chico burned.   I know the Australians will rebuild as we are doing here.   Hope it ends soon.

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1 hour ago, ozboater said:

The truly astounding fact with many of these fires is that they have not occurred naturally (eg lightning), but are man-made. I think I saw that 186 firebugs have been caught.

Before Christmas, we had to evacuate (we live amongst forest, State Forest and National Park) as we were within the projected path of a nearby fire. While we were gone, 4 local fires were started near us... by arsonists.

 

We ended up safe, but to be sure, I took my main PC and backup drive, with all the flighsim stuff - gotta have priorities...

 

The scale of these fires is massive, partly because Australia is a reeaally big place. One benefit we enjoyed was kids coming home for Christmas to get some clean air. There had been smoke like dense fog for 6 weeks, then we got some clean Northerlies for a week, just locally in Coffs, during Chrissie\NY, and the kids wanted to breathe again.

In the midst of all our joint disasters here in Australia - the massive drought - that brought on the Bushfires 

 

it was good of you Mate - to give fellow Aussie Flight Simmers - and to show all the others in the World - 

 

A touch of Ozzie humour!!:D

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2 hours ago, ozboater said:

We ended up safe, but to be sure, I took my main PC and backup drive, with all the flighsim stuff - gotta have priorities...

 

I would have done the same, just the case though and not the peripherals. Too much of a pain replacing a PC
Glad to hear you are safe I have lots of great memories at Coffs Harbour. 

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Priority for me would have been my three Mountain Bikes, two Road Bikes, CX Bike and the bike permanently linked to the trainer.

Wouldn't have been room for my PC.

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1 hour ago, gibo said:

Good to see the "Spin King" auction what must be a big piece of treasure for him.

https://www.msn.com/en-au/sport/cricket/warne-auctions-off-iconic-baggy-green-cap-for-bushfire-appeal/ar-BBYEmXB?ocid=spartandhp

 

Cheers,

 

gibo 

Stopped fitting him a long time ago when his enormous head and ego became too inflated. We have a much better 'spin king' now.

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I'd like to give a shout out to all the celebs that are throwing buckets of money into the relief fund. Thank you guys very very much, please keep it coming, there will never be enough to help those poor souls that have lost it all.

 

Don

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I know the thoughts go out to all the people who have lost love ones and property completely destroyed, but please spare a thought for the half a billion wild animals and farm livestock that have perished in this holocaust. My wife and I are animal people, we have three dogs and eight Ragdoll cats, so it goes without saying, we care for all our four legged friends. The thought of the pain these poor animals went through in their last moments has reduced us to tears. Anyone who has ever experienced a bad burn, knows the pain and suffering I refer to, relate this to a poor animal who knows nothing but why, just before it dies in horrific pain.

Two lucky ones - mother and babe.    

tumblr_5d66a1a50319be4d5cfafff8c59c4ee9_f7255ce2_640.jpg

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54 minutes ago, Aussieflyer38 said:

I know the thoughts go out to all the people who have lost love ones and property completely destroyed, but please spare a thought for the half a billion wild animals and farm livestock that have perished in this holocaust. My wife and I are animal people, we have three dogs and eight Ragdoll cats, so it goes without saying, we care for all our four legged friends. The thought of the pain these poor animals went through in their last moments has reduced us to tears. Anyone who has ever experienced a bad burn, knows the pain and suffering I refer to, relate this to a poor animal who knows nothing but why, just before it dies in horrific pain.

Two lucky ones - mother and babe.    

tumblr_5d66a1a50319be4d5cfafff8c59c4ee9_f7255ce2_640.jpg

My wife has been almost inconsolable in regards to obliteration of wildlife and stock.

We are also animal lovers and the sight of burned Roos and Koalas is an awful and lasting image. There was one of a juvenile Roo that got to a fence trying to escape the fire and only to perish hanging on to the wires. 

 

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50 minutes ago, chumley said:

Fully agree. I assume he must have been NZ born.


Firefighter Andrew O'Dwyer was born in Sydney, this was performed by people in attendance at the funeral and closed out the funeral as they drove him off. 

 

Remember the Haka is multicultural and doesn't just belong to New Zealand, it is performed throughout Polynesia, the University of Hawaii NCAA Football Team also performs the Haka during pregame, therefore the Haka also belongs to Americans too, here is an example of their Haka:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L8Rmb-ZuR1w

 

Edited by Matthew Kane
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I always have a soft spot for animals, and the horrible news about the wildlife that has been affected by this tragedy is heart breaking. It's something that I never get used to, nor would I want to. I grew up in fire country in the USA, in Southern California. My mother worked for the U.S. Forest Service as a mapper, and many times her task for the next several months after a fire was to map the full and complete extent of the damage from all the fires that hit here during our fire season. As a kid, I used to be able to go on some of those mapping missions and seeing the effects on the wildlife has stayed with me from those early days to now. Thankfully there are good people down there helping as many animals as possible. It's never enough, but it's better then nothing.

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On 1/7/2020 at 8:44 PM, Matthew Kane said:


Firefighter Andrew O'Dwyer was born in Sydney, this was performed by people in attendance at the funeral and closed out the funeral as they drove him off. 

 

Remember the Haka is multicultural and doesn't just belong to New Zealand, it is performed throughout Polynesia, the University of Hawaii NCAA Football Team also performs the Haka during pregame, therefore the Haka also belongs to Americans too, here is an example of their Haka:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L8Rmb-ZuR1w

 

In fact I read that some other teams on the mainland have tried to ban the Hawaiians from doing their Haka because they found it so intimidating;that's the point!!

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Hello All,

 

I live in a town called Harrietville, which is in North East Victoria, Australia. My wife and I and many other communities in the North East of Victoria have been devastated by the events this summer due to bushfires. We had to evacuate our home on the 2nd of January and have been allowed to come home today, 8th January, after many days of worry. We have now been advised by the CFA, that we may need to evacuate again and as the tempratures soar once again, and high winds causing more issues, it is a very stressful time, and if it was not for the brave firefighters and the pilots of many types of aircraft, then our house could have been lost.

The community spirit at the moment is high but we are also on the edge.

The help and support from everyone has been overwhelming, and I would like to say thank you to everyone for your assistance and donations. It has also impacted in a massive scale to our wildlife as well. As a grown man it is hard not to cry just seeing so much loss of some of our most vulnerable species. Kangaroos, wombats, sugar gliders just to name a few.

 

Thank you Nick for starting this post as many many people need as much help as they can get, especially those who have lost there houses and live stock.

 

Regards

Sam Craig

Harrietville, Victoria, Australia

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Utterly devastating what's happening in our world right now. With the heartbreaking wildfires in Australia the Amazon, US and other areas of our planet, my heart is broken seeing such destruction to our people and wildlife. Stay strong Aussie friends.


God bless.

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On 1/9/2020 at 3:35 PM, aviator49 said:

Hello All,

 

I live in a town called Harrietville, which is in North East Victoria, Australia. My wife and I and many other communities in the North East of Victoria have been devastated by the events this summer due to bushfires. We had to evacuate our home on the 2nd of January and have been allowed to come home today, 8th January, after many days of worry. We have now been advised by the CFA, that we may need to evacuate again and as the tempratures soar once again, and high winds causing more issues, it is a very stressful time, and if it was not for the brave firefighters and the pilots of many types of aircraft, then our house could have been lost.

The community spirit at the moment is high but we are also on the edge.

The help and support from everyone has been overwhelming, and I would like to say thank you to everyone for your assistance and donations. It has also impacted in a massive scale to our wildlife as well. As a grown man it is hard not to cry just seeing so much loss of some of our most vulnerable species. Kangaroos, wombats, sugar gliders just to name a few.

 

Thank you Nick for starting this post as many many people need as much help as they can get, especially those who have lost there houses and live stock.

 

Regards

Sam Craig

Harrietville, Victoria, Australia

 

Hi Sam,

 

My heart goes out to you and your family, and all others affected by the fires. My anger wells up when I think that some of the damage could have been avoided by earller action, by the government. This week Morrison told the Danish government that we were handling the situation and thanks for the offer  but we don't needs your people to come help. What a load of garbage, help is needed not just with fires but to clean up and help people like yourselves, and help the whole country to get back on it's feet. I hope you don't have to move again, and everything works out okay for you and your family.

 

Don

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On 1/7/2020 at 7:05 PM, chumley said:

My wife has been almost inconsolable in regards to obliteration of wildlife and stock.

We are also animal lovers and the sight of burned Roos and Koalas is an awful and lasting image. There was one of a juvenile Roo that got to a fence trying to escape the fire and only to perish hanging on to the wires. 

 

 

Hi Andy,

I'm a pretty strong guy emotionally, but I can't help but shed some tears when I see  the burnt and blackened wild animals dead on the side of the road, and imagine the pain and terror they experienced in their last moments.

 

Don 

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Obviously - all of you who have contributed to this forum  - have read somewhere about the weather here Down under.

our severe Droughts  - massive bush fires etc --- so here's a little update:-

 

__________________________________________


This is part of a poem by Dorothy McKellar:-

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.

I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me! --- (as shown in Australia V2)

 

_______________________

Well !! - she would have been happy -   during this  last few weeks

Years of severe drought in the outside of the cities - brought us water restrictions-  in the hottest summer for years

which has led to millions of hectares  of bush fires in all States - and still burning in Victoria,

And ----- last night from 11.30 - to 9am today - we -on the Gold coast - had 254.8 mm of rain - over 10"
with more forecast today

Places up in the hills - had 350 MMs - and my daughter rang from mid NSW  - she had over 10" and still raining

Its all heading South to Sydney and Victoria.

Either our prayers in Church last Sunday have been answered ------- or the Aborigines Rain Dances have worked:rolleyes:

I prefer the former

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I prefer neither. I believe in the Science the rest, IMO, is mumbo jumbo.

Edited by chumley
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