Victoria Ablaze

Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 07:33 am
oh no no, DP ........ posivibing with everything we got in the UK... take care mate... thinking bout you, yours and the rest....

Haven't heard from DDXX yet either - things have been hairy her way.

Hoping, wishing..........posi-thinking.
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Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 07:40 am
Adding my posivibes to go along with all the others that this will somehow come to an end quickly. Stay safe, be well, keep us posted as you can.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 07:50 am

Fire authorities say conditions over the next 48 hours will be as bad as those experienced on Ash Wednesday.

Winds of up to 150 kilometres an hour are expected to fan extreme fire risks throughout the state from this evening.

Mr Brumby says the strong winds are of major concern.

"If these fires get away tomorrow, you will see them race up hills at literally 50 to 100 kilometres an hour and that's why it's such a dangerous, dangerous day," he said.

Terry Ryan of the weather bureau says the winds will hit the state's west around one o'clock in the morning.

"By 3.00am or 4.00am, they should be around 40 kilometres [per hour] and a bit after that picking up to around 60 [kilometres] and we could have 60 to 80 kilometres come in to the west of the state by 4.00am or 5.00am," he said.

Hoping ...

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Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 03:42 pm
Latest info:


Winds strengthen as fire danger warning continues

Posted 2 hours 39 minutes ago
Updated 18 minutes ago

Winds are picking up in parts of Victoria, as four fires continue to burn to the north and east of Melbourne, creating a fire threat for emergency services on alert across the state.

Winds could reach more than 100 kilometres per hour in southern and mountain areas and a westerly change is expected to hit south-west Victoria about midday.

Senior forecaster at the weather bureau, Terry Ryan, says rain has fallen in Melbourne and south-west Victoria this morning, but winds are strengthening.

"The winds have picked up and we've got winds about the higher areas of about 50 to 60kph with gusts higher, so far mainly about the Grampians and Alpine areas," he said.

However the weather bureau's Peter Blake says the strong winds are now not expected to reach the state's north.

"We've actually cancelled the severe weather warning for the Mallee and northern country, so it's really only southern and mountain areas where we're expecting the gale force winds," he said.

Mr Blake says they are expected to gust up to 100kph.

"The alpine area is showing winds of 60 to 70kph, with higher gusts, and we'll see that continued strengthening of the winds during the morning," he said.

Around 5,000 firefighters are on alert across the state.

Four fires are still burning, with the Kilmore East-Murrindindi blaze causing the most concern.

Department of Sustainability and Environment spokesman Denis Ward says overnight crews have been making good use of the cool and calmer weather.

"The fires have been quiet overnight, in particular down at (Wilsons Promontory), the Bunyip complex, and the Kilmore East-Murrindindi South complex," he said.

"The same with the Kilmore East-Murrindindi North complex, where there's been a fair bit of work being done overnight again as there has been the last two or three nights."

He says the northerly winds should reach the complex by mid-morning.

The four fires are not posing a direct threat to private properties this morning.

Fire crews are working on containment lines at the blazes near Healesville, Tonimbuk, Murrindindi and at Wilsons Promontory.

Deliberate fire

Police are investigating the site of a deliberately lit fire in the south-Melbourne suburb of Chelsea.

Police attended the fire shortly after midnight which burnt out an area of scrub land before it was extinguished by the CFA.

Senior Constable Marty Beveridge says the police are struggling to understand why fires are still being lit.

"We're constantly putting out warnings about the dangers of fire itself, regardless of times like this where we've just put an SMS out regarding extreme weather expected over the next couple of days," he said.

"We're just sort of racking our brains and wondering why there's people out there that continue to have an obsession with fire."

Schools closed

Around 400 state and private schools, kindergartens and childcare centres are closed today due to the bushfire threat.

Each of the affected schools contacted parents and told them not to send students.

All state school camps have been cancelled for the week.

Fire zones

The CFA has maintained its awareness message for each of the four major fires, but no urgent threat messages have been issued overnight.

Communities in the areas surrounding the fires have been told to activate their bushfire survival plans.

This includes residents in the Yarra Valley, including communities in the vicinity of Toolangi, Castella, Fernshaw, Healesville, Don Valley, Mount Toolebewong, Badger Creek, Woori Yallock, Seville, Wandin, Coldstream, Yarra Glen, Yeringberg, Gruyere, Dixons Creek, Steels Creek and Chum Creek. No properties in the Yarra Valley are under threat at this time.

In the Warburton Valley, communities include the vicinity of Launching Place, Yarra Junction, Wesburn, Millgrove, Warburton, Warburton East, McMahons Creek, Reefton, Gladysdale, Hoddles Creek, Yellingbo and Big Pats Creek. No properties in the Warburton Valley are under threat at this time.

The Kilmore East-Murrindindi fire may affect communities along the north-eastern side of this fire including Jamieson to Woods Point areas, Howqua/Macs Cove and Goughs Bay. Residents in the Eildon to Mansfield area may experience smoke from backburning, while significant smoke and some flame may be visible from the Eildon, Goughs Bay, Jamieson and Mansfield areas. These communities are not presently under any direct threat.

The Bunyip Ridge fire is burning in the Bunyip State Park and State Forest areas between Gembrook, Powelltown, Neerim Junction and Tonimbuk and is estimated to be approximately 26,200 hectares in size. The fire is not currently posing a threat to communities.
Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 09:33 pm
Somebody said last night at Bridge that "authorities" are going overboard in the matter of caution.

Didn't lots of people perish on that first Saturday because they were avoiding the heat and were not even aware of the approach of the fire, or of any possibility of it?.

I am very grateful that many people were reminded to keep one ear on the radio, and if it saves one life that's all to the good.

It is both cooler and less windy here, 40ks from the Prom, than was threatened, but Victoria being what it is that gives no guarantees for the fire stricken areas. Vic. is a patchy place.

I wish I could know that the people up North were OK.

I tried to check the weather bureau site but couldn't wring the information out of it. Perhaps it's overloaded.
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Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 11:21 pm
Thank you A2K passed members for honouring my request.

We had a tiny dribble of rain this morning enough to wet the ground. Its gone now but it will be enough to raise the relative humidity.

three things are needed for a bad fire day. High temps (38 - 40 C), low reletive humididty (under 12% is always a danger) and high winds. currently we only have 1 of those. Wind speed is expected to increase overnight in a way thats good because the wind doesnt have the temp and RH backing it up.

Tuesday 3 March 2009 is a day of Total Fire Ban across Victoria.

Officially:- @ 3.45 pm
Strong winds have already been recorded in some parts of the State and conditions remain extreme. Although temperatures are mild, northerly winds are expected to reach 50km/h to 70 km/h with gusts of up to 100 km/hr in some locations. A strong cold front will move across Victoria bringing a strong to gale force wind change expected to shift W to SW at speeds of 50"70 km/hr.

The Kilmore East " Murrindindi Complex North fire is still going and is currently 164,180 ha in size.
The forecast today is for mostly cloudy skies with northerly winds strengthening mid-day ahead of a gusty west to southwesterly change in the evening. Patchy rain or showers are expected to develop from mid-afternoon and increasing after the change.

Those conditions may lead to serious fire danger for communities along the north-eastern side of this fire, including: Jamieson to Woods Point areas, Howqua / Macs Cove, Goughs Bay and Mountain Bay.

These communities are not presently under any direct threat. However, residents living in isolated areas with very limited road access should be prepared for this potential threat to arrive today. Residents are encouraged to activate their bushfire plan well ahead of any fire, smoke or wind risk. Travel in bushfire areas is very dangerous. If you do not need to travel it is recommended that you don’t.

We are good!

Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 11:22 pm
I hope Dadpad is okay and his house is standing.
Darn fires! We keep our fingers crossed!
Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 11:34 pm
I hope people in all the fire-threatened areas are OK ... & the wildlife, the animals, too.

The wind, right now is really fierce!
Reply Mon 2 Mar, 2009 11:51 pm
And now it's just waiting. And fervently hoping. With everyone in the risk areas on extremely high alert.
We're told by the Weather Bureau that the insane winds, which fan the fires,will last between 3 pm & 7 pm.
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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 12:06 am
Victoria's emergency services are on high alert, with strong winds today expected to fan bushfires still raging across parts of the state.

Weather forecasters have predicted a hot north-northwesterly wind gusting over 100km/h in many areas, and over 120km/h in alpine regions.

A Department of Sustainability and Environment spokesman early today said one of the key times would be when a cool change moves across the state.

"It is not just then though, it could be dangerous at any time. When you have gusty winds it can happen at any stage,'' he said.

He said about 2500 DSE firefighters were on the fire front with many more on call.

Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Peter Blake said the change would start moving across the state about lunchtime and hit Melbourne about 6pm. Worryingly, the change would also bring lightning.

Light rain fell across central and southern areas, including Melbourne, this morning but the weather bureau said this would not ease conditions. Severe weather warnings remained in place everywhere except the northern and Mallee regions.

About 300 schools and 250 childcare centres will be closed today because of the fire risk.

Four major fires are still burning out of control with the blaze at Kilmore-Murrindindi North causing the most concern, particularly to the communities of Woods Point, Jamieson, Eildon and Mount Buller.

Kevin Monk, of the DSE, told the Seven Network fire crews used the calmer weather overnight to work on control lines, but the state was tinder dry and the day would be trying for all concerned.

Up to 5000 firefighters and SES personnel are on high alert today in the biggest emergency services operation in Victoria's history.

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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 02:02 am
Fierce winds buffet Vic as fires flare
Posted 38 minutes ago

About 3,000 firefighters are patrolling the state's bushfire hotspots. (Joe Castro: AAP)

Victoria's fire-prone communities are on stand-by for worsening weather conditions tonight, as winds of up to 125kph continue to hit parts of the state.

The weather bureau says the highest gust has been recorded in the Grampians, while Melbourne airport and the Dandenong Ranges are also being buffeted.

Forecaster Evan Morgan says the winds will not drop off when a change moves through in the next few hours.

"We can pretty much expect strong and gusty winds for the rest of the afternoon and evening," he said.

"And then as that wind change moves through, the wind direction will change from the northerly.

"We're currently experiencing around to the west to south-west, but it will still be gusts up to that 90kph mark."

Major fires

About 3,000 firefighters are patrolling the state's bushfire hotspots and another 2,000 are on stand-by.

Authorities are concerned about the effect the wind change will have on four major fires still burning.

The four fires have been burning for more than three weeks and no significant new fires have started.

The four still burning from previous weeks are still within containment lines.

Residents in the Yarra Valley and Warburton Valley have been warned that fire activity continues behind control lines in the area.

Communities along the north-eastern side of the Kilmore East-Murrindini North fire including Jamieson to Woods Point areas, Howqua/Macs Cove, Goughs Bay and Mountain Bay, have also been warned of the serious fire danger.

Too dangerous for crews

Crews have been pulled back from the Bunyip Ridge fire front in Gippsland in the state's east as conditions worsen.

Steven Walls of the Country Fire Authority says one water-bombing helicopter is working on the fire.

"We've been unable to send a second one because we can't get it off the ground safely," he said.

Mr Walls says conditions are too unpredictable to allow fire crews to combat the Bunyip blaze at close range. ...<cont


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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 02:27 am

Jesus, Olga - that picture - really looks like a nightmare
So sorry. Will be keeping up to date
Thanks for letting us know what's happening
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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 06:00 am
dadpad wrote:

We are good!

good.... verra good

posivibes continuning. take care, be safe- DadPad, Spike, Indeedee et al Down Unders. Thinking of you. x
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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:08 am
proper rain not just a few spots.

Hope its not just a localised shower.

its midnight and galeforce winds do not appear to have materialised at least in this location.

I keep wondering how forcasters can be so wrong.
Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:09 am
Good luck to you all, DP . . . may your lawn wash away . . .
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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:13 am
you mean my front dirt?
Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:14 am
scratch that

front MUD
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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:14 am
The grass decamped, eh?
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Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:19 am
Let it rain!
Reply Tue 3 Mar, 2009 07:24 am
Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks!
You cataracts and hurricanoes, spout
'Til you have drowned the chickens, drenched the cocks!

Or somesuch...

We're about to be muddy, too -- thhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww..........

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