Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13922
Posted: I've just been reading about the horrible brush fires that have been ravaging Canberra lately. They say that over 400 have died, 25% of the city is without electricity, and heaven-knows-how-many have had their homes destroyed.

Are there any HOPers there who have been affected?

Sending my hopes and prayers for your safety and well-being!


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Bender_the_Offender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

Bender_the_Offender

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:it's real bad, but not that bad - 400 homes lost, 4 lives lost and no response from sarah...
the footage of the suburbs on fire basically look like judgement day.
here's oping it doesn't get any worse (the Bureau of Meteorology said that the warmer week to come (next sunday) may top the worst fire tragedy in aust, the 'ash wednesday' fires)
well, at least i save on fire fuel costs for the week....


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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primative_toys


happy hunting
Location: Brisnyland

Total posts: 228
Posted:thats bad to hear coming from back home, keep safe canberrians,.. all my heart is with you.
mythmitch

[ 20. January 2003, 13:10: Message edited by: fi-PRIMATE-re ]


regret nothing, learn everything

fire_light_movement

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13922
Posted:I just re-read the article and saw that I had mis-read it. Yeah, "only" four dead and 400 out of their homes.

Doesn't make it suck any less when you're one of those 400. Or when you loved one of the 4.

Stay safe, Canberrans.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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flash fire
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

flash fire

Sporadically Prodigal
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2758
Posted:It's really tragic. The stories and pictures are all over the newspapers this morning - all displays of such loss and heartache.

Every summer Australian's battle the bushfires, the large proportion of which are DELIBERATELY lit by pyromaniacs. Not cool.

Much of the Canberran infrastructure has been devastated, resulting in concern as there may be a sewage spill into one of the major rivers in NSW - one that irrigates much of the already drought-striken rural areas.

Fire: power of force, creation and destruction.

I always feel slightly guilty at times like this, not so much for being a firedancer, but for having spent all weekend with my friends and having a great time. I was unaware of the severity of the fires til I saw the papers this morning, and feel bad that I spent my whole weekend in self-absorbed fun when there is so much suffering in the world.

Much love and positivity to all effected.


HoP Posting Guidelines
Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?
If you can answer YES to these 4 questions then you may post a reply.

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Rozi
SILVER Member since Jan 2002

100 characters max...
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2996
Posted:I spoke with some good mates of mine over the weekend. They were up in Sydney for a conference, but had to rush back to Canberra as their homes were being evacuated. As far as I know, their homes are safe. Most of the homes lost were in the Duffey area.

Another friend lost her studio, which contained all her art for an upcoming exhibition. She is devastated.

I don't think I have ever seen fires this bad. Or at least, not as many homes lost. With most of the recent fires moving through Sydney, the danger was spot fires leaping across containment lines and taking one or two houses. With this the reports suggest it was a firestorm, an almost solid wall of flame.

more detail including contact phonelines here


It was a day for screaming at inanimate objects.

What this calls for is a special mix of psychology and extreme violence...

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13922
Posted:Funny. There was a time when all this would have been "gee, that's too bad." But so far away.

But now I have friends in Australia, thanks to HOP. And their sorrows...and their joys, hit a lot closer to home here in Ann Arbor, Michigan.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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s-p-l-a-t


member
Location: Brisbane, Qld, Australia

Total posts: 383
Posted:It *is* tragic... they don't have enough money/resources to really contain any of the blazes really... queensland sent down some paramedics and firefighters etc (yesterday?) but I mean it seems as though they are just small drops in a huge pond. The weather ain't helping at all... we need massive storms with loads of rain for a couple of days at least.. over a huge area... *sighs*

A good mate has loads of rellies down there - some of which have lost their houses. The lost artwork!!!! I sincerely hope the artistic inspiration and energy comes to her again really quickly... I do art myself (as a hobby) .. I can just begin to imagine how I'd feel in that situation.

My own sincere condolences to ppls touched by these fires. I'm praying for rain and for some miraculous weather change for the good.

I too woke up from an awesome weekend to news headlines that kinda brought me back to reality.

Anyways... thoughts and energy going out to those in need (especially the oz bushfire victims/fighters) but suffering round the world too.


The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.- B.B.King

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JeStEr
SILVER Member since Jul 2001

enthusiast
Location: Melbourne Australia

Total posts: 214
Posted:Yeah they're terrible, scenes from video cameras driving down the roads blew my mind, it serriously looked like they were driving across a lava flow the embers were that thick!
Looks like judment day is a good call, the sun barely shines through the smoke it's that thick and dark.

I'm studying natural resource management and as such have completed the subjects wild fire behaviour 1 + 2 so i'm considering becoming a voli at the local brigade since this may well be the worst summer for fires since ash wednesday or ever.

*why can't eucalypts produce a fire retardant oil instead that volatile stuff*

Hope all peeps in canberra are safe, give us a yell.

Very concerned as they've moved into Victoria and my hole vally was covered in smoke today as well as all of the Melb metro district.


Trying to play the Akashic records,
but my turntables not compatible.

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Fire_Emanator


member
Location: Australia

Total posts: 96
Posted:There is an existing beleif that it is Karma! It is not hard to find reasons for australia and especially the Capital-Canberra- racking up some bad Karma...
Babylon is burning!


Free your mind and your ass will follow!

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Zoltar
BRONZE Member since Nov 2002

Zoltar

Beginner
Location: Beyond Time, South of Melbourn...

Total posts: 282
Posted:Hey Fire_Emanator,

Thats a bit harsh isnt it.

What percentage of people living in Canbera actually have any power? A very small percentage I would suggest. Are you saying that the rest of the people in Canbera need to suffer for the decisions of a few politicians?

jEsTEr, I live 2 hours south of Melbourne, and we too were covered in smoke yesterday

[ 21. January 2003, 14:38: Message edited by: Zoltar ]


So much fire, so little body hair...

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SpArKiE


SpArKiE

*shiny shiny*
Location: Townsville, QLD, Aust.

Total posts: 218
Posted:my mum was down in ACT last w/e.. and she said if there was to be a fire it would burn the hole place down- and she wasnt wrong! she said it was really dry, and dead.

i dont think it helps much that between suburbs theres alot of bush and stuff...

but we gotta remember ppl- its not only 400 homes lost... think of all the animals who lived in all the trees lost too. now i know it is really sad that those ppl have lost their houses... geez i dunno how i'd cope, but many of the animals are now homeless, mabye be even dead.

its sad on both accounts!

wheres Elvis when ya need him? (are we even using those choppers???)

ive been listenin to the radio all week and today they think the wind was changin for the better... so thats good!

all my love and best wishes for anyone down there!


And wherever you've gone and wherever we might go. It don't seem fair. Today just disappeared.

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Twirl'N'Burn


Booojakasha
Location: Brisbane QLD Australia

Total posts: 121
Posted:I don't know about any of you other Australian HOPers but this complete fire ban - which is understandable - is really putting a dampener on our fire nights.

* Sigh * I think ill just have to move to glo gear.


Simply an excuse to play with fire.

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TheBovrilMonkey
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

TheBovrilMonkey

Liquid Cow
Location: High Wycombe, England

Total posts: 2629
Posted:Since I've seen nothing about the fires for a while, can anyone who lives a bit closer post an update?

But there's no sense crying over every mistake. You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.

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Ade
SILVER Member since Mar 2001

Are we there yet?
Location: australia

Total posts: 1897
Posted:I have just come back from spending the weekend in Canberra with my sister. The air has the smell of burnt bush, some parts of which are still smouldering. There's still a bit of an eerie feeling. My sister said that they could see the blue sky for the first time in nearly two weeks on Thursday.

It's quite sobering to drive around Canberra and see just how close the fires came to homes, offices and the like - right up to back fences. My uncle's back yard was on fire until the wind changed - 5 more minutes and he'd have lost his house. Others in his street wern't so lucky.

There are a lot of dead kangaroos etc on the sides of the roads as they've come down from the bush to get away from the fires. And birds - everywhere in town trying to catch up some food.

Apparently Elvis was sighted in Canberra, grading and clearing is still continuing.

On a side note - I would normally take my Fire Toys away with me for the weekend, but it just didn't seem right to take fire to an area which has been so affected.

You know how we here love the sound of fire rushing past our heads? People in canberra have been talking about the noise of the fires being so incredibly loud, something that you never want to hear again.

Go to go, might edit this later.


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Magickal_Kaleidoscope


member
Location: Newcastle, Australia

Total posts: 119
Posted:yeh i live up in newcastle some idiots set fire to my backyard when i got back from holidays luckily it only did backburning we couldn't get the firemen 2 do. i live on a 100 acres

my aunt and uncle had to be evacuated .

quote:There is an existing beleif that it is Karma! It is not hard to find reasons for australia and especially the Capital-Canberra- racking up some bad Karma...
Babylon is burning!
i hardly think canberra has any relation to babylon most of the people who have power in Australia live in sydney.
karma maybe the sydney bush fires had more of a connection because that is Australias main econmic centre and the fire had actually formed a circle around it


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sarah...


member
Location: Central coast / Sydney, Austra...

Total posts: 339
Posted:well everyone....
heres a first encounter of the canberra bushfires.
it was absolutely incredible! i was on a bus coming home from melbourne onb saturday the 18th january and from anout 70 km out. i could see a huge cloud lingering above canberra. it looked like a still version of a cloud from an explosion or the massive cloud from a volcano or even the twin towers. very solid looking and not moving. as we drove onto canberra everything turned to midinght, at 3pm. it was nuts. my best mate lives in the weston creek area, the worst affected, and she was at my house waiting for me to come home. after an alarming phonecall i had to run home through the city to get to my house which is about a 10 minute walk from the city. when i got there i grabbed my friend and threw her in the car and drove out to her house. all the traffic lights at major intersections were out aand no police to be seen. there were cars stopped in the middle of the road and people just standing there on the road staring into the black and orange sky.

we ran around her house listening to onbe of the local radio stations giving directions on hoow to prepare your home for fire. we did all they said and all we could in the time that we had, and then we lost power to her home and the streets we could see from the window. we had wet pillow cases wrapped arpund our faces to prevent smoke inhalation and sunglasses on top stop smoke and dusk and ash getting into our eyes. it didnt do much for our vision. we couldnt see shit in the dark with our sunglasses on. when we lost power, all we could hear was the raging wind and the fire and the occasional helecopter, not often enough.

we grabbed what we could of her and her housaemates valuables and chucked them in the car. then we dropped my friends flatmate at her boyfriends house the next suburb over, and we could see some of the fires from his front yard. we drove past it and there was no cop or fireman to be seen. only a few onlookers and a man with a long garden hose just standing there spraying water into the flames.

as we drove home, we saw more traffic lights out and more people staning on the road and a few people with horses leading them to a safehaven.
back at my house, we were safe, just listening to the radio announcer lasting off the evacuated suburbs. i had no idea canberra even had that many suburbs.

i noticed there were gumleaves on the floor of my balcony. when i looked closer i saw that they were burnt. the closest gumtree to here is kilometres away. when we looked up into the sky it was like it was snowing burnt gumleaves being carried by the wind for about 15 km. it was an intense thought.

the aftermath was dreadful.. but i give uit to the canberra community for being so strong and supportive. there were people ringing the radio station offeriong their goods and services to anyone who needed it. there was one little girl who was home alone in one of the medium alert suburbs who rang up saying she didnt have a ladder and was to young to get up on her roof to clear the gutters. so another listener called the staion and then went over to her house and cleaned the gutters for her. it a touching story!!!

canberra only experienced blue sky for the first time on thursday and it was a huge releif.

im glad to have experienced a day gone down in history..

hope you enjoyed my first hand encounter...

and bender... thanks for the concern.. im ok!!!!!


Fire... A bushmans telly

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Bender_the_Offender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

Bender_the_Offender

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:good to hear ya safe and sound.
is it wrong to say that it was a mad story?!?!

something to look back on when we're all looking to compare freaky happenings later in life, methinks.


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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sarah...


member
Location: Central coast / Sydney, Austra...

Total posts: 339
Posted:i think its one hell of a story. duuno how i went with the retelling of such an event but all in all the whole thing was beautiful and moving. even the sad parts. its all truly an amazing experience. so bender... saying that is AY OK!

Fire... A bushmans telly

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ElectricBlue
GOLD Member since Feb 2002

ElectricBlue

Now with extra strawberries
Location: Canberra, Australia

Total posts: 810
Posted:hi there
i live in canberra to but luckly i live in a suburb closer to the middle. but i had to go and help some of my friends figt fires around mt rodgers. it was not to bad up there after a while beacuse 1 or 2 of the many helliecopters came and bombarded it with water. for any one whos in to helliecopters there was two sikorsky skycranes ( the ones like elvis) and i think a Bell Jetranger there were others but i couldent tell what they were.

The other day i drove passed some of the worst hit areas and i my eyes i think it was extreamly lucky that more people didn't die considering how many people stayed behind to fight fires, how windie it was, how viccious the fires were and how many people were walking around on there rofes and such.

MIssie


I {Heart} hand me downs and spinning in the snow.<br /><br />

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sarah...


member
Location: Central coast / Sydney, Austra...

Total posts: 339
Posted:i agree with you missie! the directions they were giving on the radio were to stay at home if youre in the high alert areas. up untill they found the first casualty, then it was to leave. they were tellng people "stay in your homes and prepare them for fire... do not leave your homes until officially evacuated." until someone died, then its "leave your homes and go to one of the evacuation centres". mind you, one of these evacuation centres had to be evacuated!! i think all the officials there freaked out and werent sure what to do about any of it.

Horray for all the fireys that fought our fires! 3 cheers!! hip hip horay! hip hip hooray! hip hip horay!
mustve been the toughest time of thier fire careers, and they deserve so many beers for thier efforts.

did you know..
it takes 2 fire units to kill a flame engulfing a whole house. 2. do you know how many fire units were out in duffy when the blaze went through?? 11. do you know how many houses were on fire? me neither, but it was more than 5 1/2.
maybe our dear friend johnny h. should think more about what hes training our military forces for. perhaps the army should have fireifighting training and facilities. it shouldnt be our firefighters under ridicule, rethinking their system, it should be our prime minister.

If you know a fire fighter who was sent down to fight the canberra bushfires, give him a hug and buy him a beer for me would you!!


Fire... A bushmans telly

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