Grampians Fire information

Submitted: Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 11:31
ThreadID: 30377 Views:1523 Replies:3 FollowUps:5
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Western Victorian MP John Vogels has been accused by Premier Bracksie of politicising the fire situation in his call for a judicial into the fire. He has talked extensively with "Ararat Rural City and Northern Grampians Council representatives, the Municipal Emergency Coordinators, personnel from DSE and CFA, the VFF and the Incident Control Centre at Halls Gap, and many property owners affected".

The Hamilton Spectator has reported a lot of the situation of the fire and it has been on the ABC too about the single tree that was struck by lightning. According to the incident report I understand the Thursday 19th January fire that bacame the raging infurno that consomed 160,000 hectares of bush and farmland, killing people and livestock. The tree fire was not contained and so far little information has come out on the effort by DSE on any effort they used to contain the fire. It was 40 hectares next day.

No wonder Bracksie doesn't want an enquiry but is all of a sudden is throwing money at the fire area.
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Reply By: Vince NSW - Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 11:59

Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 11:59
Being a long time (22 years) member of the RFS in NSW in the Blue Mountains, I can say with a a small bit of knowledge, that it is not allways possibel to get into a single tree. Our 2004 fires that started at Mt Hall was a small lightning strike that was assumed to be safe as we had other bigger fires impacting on builtup areas & Mt hall was 20 km south in very rough country.
This fire stopped the next afternoon when it hit the Pacific 65 km to the south east.
My reason for saying this, is wait and see what facts come out, there may be reasons why the ONE tree was not put out.
If your Coroner are anything like the ones in NSW, they will get to the bottom of the situation.
One other thing, I am not a fan Of the DSE or NSW National Sparks & Wild fires, so I am not sticking up for them.
For what its worth.
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 22:33

Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 22:33
I grant you a single tree can be in difficult country but even when it was 40 hectares they couldn't handle it or allow in equipment to do so as I am hearing. That is why Bracksie doesn't want it in the open one would imagine.

Actually John Vogels had a tree on his own farm that caught alight with a lightning and it took three fire trucks at a 30 metre tree that was hollow and acting like a chimney sending sparks all around. The need was to cut it down to stop the chimney. Permission had to be granted by the DSE to cut it down. Do you think they could get there within two hours of the call to them? Just. Red tape to fight a fire.
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Follow Up By: Member - Julie P (VIC) - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 17:14

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 17:14
While on the Victorian fire subject - away from the politics of it all - which can get very bogged down can't it - how about the firies from NSW (any elsewhere) who cam to help - did my heart good to see a convoy of them travelling towards NSW through Bairnsdale on Sunday - a big THANK YOU!!!! from all is well deserved. Thanks also to the local guys - not that I live anywhere near the affected areas - but I love travelling though them all the same.
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 17:43

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 17:43
Julie, we can all be thankful to the way the states have worked together over the last few years. You are right, best to keep from the politics of the situations, but there are some unfotunate times where it is inextricibly bound in.

There has been a lot of standardisation of gear where there is interchangeability too which is fantastic. Fittings to pumps, hoses and the like. I guess radio frequencies too.
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Reply By: Mad Dog (Australia) - Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 12:26

Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 12:26
Bracks was interviewed on ABC radio this morn John, refuted all allegations and said that everything was hunky dory...hahahaha
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 22:35

Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 22:35
Yes, I heard him Ray. Muddy the waters as much as he could.
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Reply By: Shaker - Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 16:54

Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 16:54
Why are we always looking for somebody to blame? Apparently, the fact is a tree got struck by lightning in an inaccessible area.

What about the Erica/Moondara fire that threatened Erica, Moondara, Rawson Walhalla, Cooper's Creek, Yalloun North, Glengarry, Cowwarr, Toongabbie & Tyers. This fire was DELIBERATELY lit, & the combined efforts of the DSE, CFA & other fire services in controlling the blaze was nothing short of fantastic!
As was probably the case with the 'single tree', there were areas of our fire which were virtually indefensible with crews having to rappel in from helicopters with little more than hand tools.
AnswerID: 152775

Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 22:55

Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 22:55
Shaker, I know that area a bit from travelling in the area kayaking the Thompson and I was just as concerned about it and checking my maps.

I have been talking about this fire only because it is one where I am finding out more but expect to be down your way before long. Yes, it is said an inaccessible area, we may find out more in the next few days. The CFA logged it but it was stated to be in the DSE area if the National Park.

I am yet to find out about the maintenace of the fire tracks as there was a lot of Commonwelath funds to get them into shape. NSW actually spent their allocation, where we seem to be getting track closures in Victoria. I guess your area as the west and the High Country too, when I was there during the year I could not see much expenditure that way.

Mate, I am not looking to someone to blame, but would like to overcome system failures for the future, by affecting policy changes if necessary. I recognise the problems of a person lighting fires and I hear repeatedly doing so. No better than a terrorist.

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