Australia fire damage 'like war zone'

2011-11-26 09:26

Perth - An Australian bushfire which ripped through a scenic coastal region left some areas looking like a war zone, residents said on Saturday as authorities downgraded the alert level.

Thirty-four houses, four sheds and nine chalets, including the historic 1865 Wallcliffe House, were lost in the blaze which also damaged a further 16 houses and one shop at Prevelly, Gnarabup and Redgate.

"Although the warning was downgraded overnight... a fire threat still exists and may worsen at any time," Western Australia's Department of Environment and Conservation's bushfire advisory said.

It is expected it will take a week to fully extinguish the flames which ripped through some 3 363ha in the coastal, wine-growing region about 280km south of the west coast city of Perth.

One man who lost his home, Garrath Stewart, said his street had been badly hit by the blaze which burned out his house but left clothes on the washing line in the garden virtually untouched.

"Napalm, Vietnam, defoliation - there's just no vegetation in certain areas - you look out and it's just sand and dead trees," he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation after being taken by bus to see the devastation.

"It's like a war zone," one firefighter told Sky News. "Nothing can compare."

The fire was sparked by a government burn-off which got out of control as high winds and soaring temperatures hit the area on Wednesday and Thursday.

Fire crews made the most of milder conditions Friday to strengthen containment lines and about 250 firefighters and volunteers, aided by water bombers, were working to ensure the fire does not spread again.

  • Poloyatonki - 2011-11-26 10:16

    It seems like the almighty is finally dishing his punishment to them.

      darktruth - 2011-11-26 10:38

      Its a bushfire, if you had a brain you would no Australia has always had a threat of these sorts of fires. Get a brain.

      aardvarkie - 2011-11-26 10:42

      What? Idiot!

      Henri - 2011-11-26 11:14

      You idiot - do you even know where Australia is klonkie. What punishment do we deserve and why do you hate Australians. As we say here "Get a life you useless Drongo"

      Kogie - 2011-11-26 11:25

      it is definitely not a good thing to say. i think you should apologise and say something more sympathatetic.

      Dmitri - 2011-11-26 11:35

      polo-did you have a brain fart or what???

      Michael - 2011-11-26 11:58

      Punishment for what you clown? I happen to have a friend in that area, you insensitive pr!ck. The people that have been affected are nurses and Doctors. People who help the sick. Now what have they done to deserve punishment from the almighty? I am beginning to wonder if you have ever said anything remotely intelligent, or anything that vaguely symbolizes any sort of human emotion, ethics, morals or principals. If I think back to every post of yours that I have had the displeasure of reading, I cannot think of one example where you have displayed any sympathy either. You are a narcissistic buffoon, with psychotic tendencies. Someone with whom society would be better without. Stupidity is understandable, and you my friend, are very stupid. But ignorance, something you suffer from utterly and completely, is unforgivable. You stupid, ignorant, arrogant waste of oxygen. You are just a common, uneducated thug. Something all to common in SA at the moment...

      Zion - 2011-11-26 14:13

      Talk about Australia then the ghost of Bryce Lawrence is resurrected and cause for pain.

      Nicholas.Spaggiari - 2011-11-26 16:12

      @Henri that's actually a good question. Why do South Africans hate Australia so much, Australia did nothing to them. People here have nothing against South Africa and many of them are interested in SA. I found that they are happy to share their country and I feel accepted and welcomed here. Australia also has a huge foreign aid budget of $4.8 billion that help many African countries just like South Africa where there is poverty, hiv, aids etc. That means ordinary aussie families paying extra taxes for the less fortunate in places such as South Africa. They do this without any thanks in return, which is ok… but it’s not cool when they get hate in return. I'm sure Australia would feel remorse for people in South Africa when they suffer from disasters. I find most aussies to be very compassionate. I think the reason why South Africa hates Australia is probably because many South Africans have left and moved here. I don't know really... But to me that would be the biggest Irony of all, a country that hates another country but half of them decide to go and live there. O_o

      Douglas - 2011-11-26 22:46

      troll alert...but then, what else is new?

  • Mary - 2011-11-26 10:23

    We may not love our government, but at least they haven't set fire to the country yet.

      Nicholas.Spaggiari - 2011-11-26 10:28

      That's not nice, punishment for what? It was just an unfortunate instance where fire got out of control.

      Dmitri - 2011-11-26 11:36

      Mary, are you related to polodonky?

      Nicholas.Spaggiari - 2011-11-26 12:44

      The South African government has done a lot more than burn it's own country.

      Mary - 2011-11-26 12:45

      I didn't say anything about punishment, it just struck me as ironic that it was the government who started the fire.

      Nicholas.Spaggiari - 2011-11-26 15:28

      And why is that Ironic? The government cannot control unpredictable winds and weather. What did this have to do with the SA government in the first place? O_o I don't think our South African government even knows what a burn-off is.

      Shoosh - 2011-11-26 19:40

      @Mary - not IRONIC but maybe MORONIC.

      Nicholas.Spaggiari - 2011-11-27 05:51

      shoosh, no let me tell you what MORONIC is, it’s the South African government telling all males to get circumcised because it will prevent them from getting AIDS. That takes the cake, because they really believe this.

  • Eric - 2011-11-26 12:40

    My comment was deleted because I called you fools, who feed the troll, to order. You lot are worse that the troll and News 24 loves it when they wind you up cause it brings out your true colours.

      Michael - 2011-11-26 13:03

      If by showing you my true colors, you mean speaking for friends that cannot speak for themselves, then I am every color in the rainbow.

  • les.cunningham1 - 2011-11-26 13:36

    Did any of you read the story? "The fire was sparked by a government burn-off which got out of control as high winds and soaring temperatures hit the area on Wednesday and Thursday".

      Nicholas.Spaggiari - 2011-11-26 15:44

      Yes. I hope that some don't believe that politicians were out in their suits starting fires. It's standard procedure in fire rescue, in certain dry areas firemen go out and do burn-offs every year at the start of summer. And in this case crazy winds showed up and created a problem which then got out of control. When they say government, they mean the firemen who work for the government. Also, it wasn't intended, or planned, or due to some sort of Bribe. lol, it's not South Africa.

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