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Melissa in Australia

the thing I hate about summer - Updated

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The thing I hate about summer is not the extremely hot weather- that is uncomfortable but I can live through it.

 the thing I hate is having a whole week of extreme weather then dry thunderstorms with lots of lightning and no rain  in sight

 Over 80 fires were started last night just in my area of Victoria.  I live in the bush. The closest fire is over 50 km away, but today is going to be another extreme heat day  of 44 oC with very strong hot winds and high chance of more dry thunderstorms with lots of lightning again this afternoon.

 

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just as I was posting this the CFA has issued a watch and act, asking people to implement their fire plan and leave for the small town only about 17 km away from us. still a ways away form us, and I am sure they are being overly cautious but it does me a tad nervous

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Melissa I really hope things stay safe for you we are in sa and have bush near the house. I hate to feel like I'm overreacting by leaving before we need to but I guess it would be worse not to leave. Today we're going to town to the pool, so I won't be sitting at home worrying. If you need to leave please make sure you leave early.

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Saw the reports this morning, I hope you see some rain before the situation gets too dangerous.

 

I am in QLD so I am more worried about floods than fires at this point. After such a long drought people built where they shouldnt, forgot about water flow when building roads etc, and after the past few years where I have found myself in the middle of things (we call our first daughter our flood baby for good reason!) its become a very real summer danger for us. Meanwhile stradbroke island is on fire (again...) and the christmas heatwave resulted in a tornado for one town! (Tornados are not a common thing in australia the way they are for america)

 

What an amazing country, when one end can be on fire, the other end flooding, and both ends are arguing over who copes with heat better! (Vics heatwave might have hit 45c but with, like, 10% humidity, whereas our 45c last week was with 55% or something crazy like that)

 

And still another month to go...

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living in a dry high fire area, I also hate how the dry wind seems to make weather of it's own.  It seems to make MORE dry and windy and make the rain just go away. 

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In the past few years, we have dealt with historical fires and floods here.  I have known people who lost homes in both the fires and the major flood.  It is winter here in Colorado now, so it is easy to get complacent.  But, hearing you talk about the dry heat and fire danger made the hair rise on the back of my neck.  I feel for you and will be thinking of you.

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I hate that I can't get dd into the city to see Horrible Histories- Egypt at the theatre tonight because there are fires in the way. To look on the bright side, I'm more disappointed than she is. :) I hope her dad can find someone to give the ticket to. And I hope they get those fires out because there's a lot of people living in those suburbs...

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In WA we had more that 50 homes lost to a fire last weekend, and this weekend is another hot one.

 

I hope they get the fires there under control soon Melissa.

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This is what our state looks like atm, and probably for the next month or so. http://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/warnings-and-incidents/index.html

 

 

It sure is nasty over in WA too. :(

 

(They were right. Terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days happen in Australia too. :p )

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 Over 80 fires were started last night just in my area of Victoria.  I live in the bush. The closest fire is over 50 km away, but today is going to be another extreme heat day  of 44 oC with very strong hot winds and high chance of more dry thunderstorms with lots of lightning again this afternoon.

 

We lived in Canberra when the bush fire of 2003(?) tore through our suburb. It was another fire started by lightening and fueled by hot, dry winds.  As if the fire and the direct damage itself wasn't bad enough, temps in the very high 30Cs,  evacuation centers, no running water, and no electricity - let's just say it was not my favorite time in Australia.

 

Much sympathy and hope for cool, fresh rain showers for you!

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This is what our state looks like atm, and probably for the next month or so. http://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/warnings-and-incidents/index.html

 

 

It sure is nasty over in WA too. :(

 

(They were right. Terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days happen in Australia too. :p )

 

IF you zoom in on the map that Rosie provided, I am near the Cape Conran Coastal Park in the east of the state. the fire will not reach me today, but the highway is now cut and the fire is expected to grow very, very large ( they are predicting 500, 000 hectares http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/latest-news/vic-gippsland-fire-could-reach-500000ha/story-fn3dxiwe-1226804194147). the long term weather forecast is no any significant rain for 6 weeks .. and February is usually our hotter month...

 

the terrain is very heavily timbered with eucalyptus trees and scrub (highly flammable in hot weather), mostly inaccessible areas with small clusters of habitation. lots of the area is state forest or national parks

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Oh, Melissa, I feel for you :grouphug:  That is wayyyy too close for comfort. I feel exactly the same way about summer - the heat is endurable, but one whiff of that smoke and my stress levels go through the roof. Praying for your safety xx

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Good luck, Victorians. Much as we Sydneyites like to make rude remarks about those south of border, we are really very fond of you so please take care.

D

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Good luck, Victorians. Much as we Sydneyites like to make rude remarks about those south of border, we are really very fond of you so please take care.

D

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I'm in SA too. DH is madly running around the yard securing things before the cyclonic winds blow something through a window. We went out today...I couldnt stand one more day locked in the house again and on the way home the car was nearly blown sideways several times. We live out in the bush too. There's been black smoke pouring in from somewhere up the road for two days but there hasn't been a warning so I dont know where its coming from.

 

Theres only one road out from where I live...it makes me very nervous too.

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I'm in the southeast US and we get summer high humid hot with Tornados.    We rarely have dangerous winters but our summers are touchy.

 

Keep your family safe and hope that your home is spared from fire.

 

and as a side note my kids now older still love all TV shows about the Australian bush(they grew up with that snake guy that died can't remember his name)

 

 they  would think it so cool that I have a chance to communicate with a true "bad a$$"  :laugh:   Which they think anyone living in Australia would need to be tough.  We only see tv shows regarding your climate and wildlife (mainly the top most poisonous animal ). The area seems beautiful but very unforgiving from TV shows.

 

 

 

 

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Not unforgiving. The bush grows back. More like PMS cycles, really. We speak of Mother Nature, don't we? :p

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All well here, threats in SA reduced over night though some houses were lost...

 

Melissa and others from Vic really hoping you are safe

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We're in the dry hot desert in Central Australia visiting family.

This time of year is fairly horrid here, regularly in the 40s oC.

Instead it is cool, high 20's oC, with rain on and off for several days. Rain here is very rare.

It is tropical and we love it!

This contrasts with the mid 40s oC all week of our home set in farming land where we would be glued to local radio for potential fire warnings.

Like we did this week last year, with no electricity and our feet in a tub of water.

 

We've been watching the news. Pretty scary.

Especially that Grampians fire with a 20km column of cloud and smoke making its own weather. 

 

It is rare to come up here to escape the nasty summer heat. Especially when combined with that wind sewingmomma was talking of.

 

Hope you all come through unscathed and Australia dosen't repeat previous horror seasons.

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The fires near me are moving in the opposed direction,  so I think  we will be fine :hurray: . Several small settlements are in danger. Most people in those areas have either left or are actively fighting the fire, the highway is still closed.

we are right near the airport. there are lots of fire bombers taking off and landing. the temperature is a comfortable 30  oC today with a light breeze. as long as we do not get any strong winds then the fire is "manageable", as soon as a wind starts up the fire will run.

only one house was lost yesterday and they think it might have been  lit  on purpose and not associated with the bushfire :confused1:

 

The fires here were no where near as bad as the ones in the Grampians.

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Today is the worst bushfire day in 6 years  for my state of Victoria, Australia. There are many bushfires burning out of control in my area. Towns 15 minutes away are being evacuated as I write. it is 41oC with a very strong hot northly wind pushing the fires closer. there will be a wind change in 2 hours that will bring 100 km /h winds that are meant to drive the fires onto private property and farmland. the sky is very dark with smoke. It is awful. If you click on the link that Rosie posted up  in the thread you will see all the fires marked out.

 

The worst thing is the lack of information on the exact location of the fire. it would be helpful if they gave roads or something of where the fires are instead of areas.

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Hope you are safe and well, was thinking about you yesterday wondering how you were. It was a bad day here, too but today is cool and lovely, though the fire in the flinders is still burning.

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Oh dear OH dear. the town of Orbost is being told to evacuate to the community refuge. that is the closet town to me about 10 minutes drive. that is where my parents and brother and sister live. that is the town that everyone in outlining farms and villages was told to evacuate to. the sky is black with red streaks, we have ash falling on our house. all roads are closed. I personally am not in danger, the ocean is about 5 minutes walk away from my house, but it is pretty scary.

I feel for all the people on the farms etc that will be impacted when the change comes in 1 hour. the worst is not knowing exactly where the fire is.

 

I hope Rosie is OK.

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the change went through, temporarily pushing the fires into different directions. Though it is completely still now and the fires have slowed down a little but are still blazing. several houses have been destroyed in Victoria today. I am sure when people are allowed back into evacuated areas they will find more houses lost.

 

I hope Rosie is OK

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Oh my, I hope they can get those fires under control soon and that the number of homes lost is very limited.  Praying for all being evacuated and for all you on the board that live in the fire affected areas.

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We were at an After Harvest party on Saturday night. We had sprinklers on us and 6 heavy duty water pistols soaking us all to keep cool right up til about midnight before it started to get a bit cooler.

One of our neighbours had 4 members of her family all in separate incidences get dumped by the rescue water bomber in the fires that went through near here a couple of weeks ago. All are fine and their houses were also saved, but without the timely arrival of the bombers it would have been very different..

 

Thankfully local ABC radio here is good at updating specific areas. But once fires start racing they can change direction quickly.

Victoria has so many separate fires going, that it makes it more difficult to follow too.

 

 

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I live in Colorado.  We get the extremes all the time.  This winter has been horrible with lots of snow and temps in the single digits and below zero.  Last summer the entire state (almost) was fighting fires.  They were popping up all over the place.  I love living in Colorado though and can't imagine living anywhere else.  

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I think there are fires around where Rosie lives. I know her fire plan was to evacuate.

 

hope she is OK.

 

Bummer.  I hope she is OK, as well.  Hopefully she, her family, and her home will be safe.

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One of the fires spotted into the open cut coal mine that feeds coal into the state's electricity generator. coal fires are next to impossible to put out, they can burn underground. There is a remote possibility  that it could compromise the state's electricity supply. meanwhile the small city (Morwell) that is close to there is getting covered in toxic coal fire smoke.

 

One of the out of control fires is just behind the dairy farm where my son works. that is about 10 km away as the crow flies. It is still in the bush (the farm backs up to the bush). My son said the flames are visible from the farmhouse. In fact the flames are visible from the hill behind our house (the boys only just told me that). The weather is only 29o C today and 33o C tomorrow, which makes it unlikely for the fire to start running again in the next few days at least..

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just as I was posting this the CFA has issued a watch and act, asking people to implement their fire plan and leave for the small town only about 17 km away from us. still a ways away form us, and I am sure they are being overly cautious but it does me a tad nervous

I can't deal with the heat, 98 fahrenheit and above i tend to hibernate. To have to implement your FIRE PLAN sounds very urgent, I hope you stay safe. What is your fire plan, by the way?

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our fire plan is to stay and fight. every summer we put a huge fire pump behind our house connected to the dam. we also have huge concrete water tanks behind the house ( our rainwater supply), plus we put barrels of water at each corner of the house with mops. each person in the house knows exactly what their job would be. we even have a last stand refuge, a separate from the house room that is half buried into the ground and is clad in corrugated steel.

 if the day is particularly dangerous we might evacuate. it depends on the weather, direction of the fire, speed of the fire and the temperature of the day. where our house is located we could easily get stuck with no escape that is why we have decide to stay and defend. we have more chance defending our house and using it a s a refuge than driving along a road that is completely enclosed in bush.

 

Every year every household in rural Victoria is strongly encouraged to make a fire plan. we Aussies take the threat of bushfire very seriously here

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SO, then I saw that this thread was started two weeks ago or more, and you are still in harm's way? I guess you love where you are living. You are a tough lady! I live in central Texas out away from the city. Wildfires are a common occurence here but not like what happens where you live. There was a fire two years ago about 50 miles away and most of us couldn't go outside because of the smoke.

That would scare me to stay and fight than to try to evacuate. No, both scares me.

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There are not many places in Victoria that are totally free of the chance of having a bushfire. Even the outer suburbs of Melbourne can have bushfire rush through them.

The fires around me did start 2 weeks ago. They have grown to be massive size, over 100,000 hectares burned so far.  And that is just the fires in East Gippsland.

 We have thick smoke that is like fog over us. During the late afternoon it rose a bit and we had a fresh sea breeze.  At least it is white smoke now. On Sunday it was thick black smoke and we had fine ash raining down with the occasional charred leaf. Apparently the smoke from the fires in Victoria has reached almost to Tasmania.

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I am glad to see you are still ok Melissa. Though I have to say your fire plan sounds terrifying. I hope you never have to use it.

 

Has anyone heard from Rosie yet?

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There are not many places in Victoria that are totally free of the chance of having a bushfire. Even the outer suburbs of Melbourne can have bushfire rush through them.

The fires around me did start 2 weeks ago. They have grown to be massive size, over 100,000 hectares burned so far.  And that is just the fires in East Gippsland.

 We have thick smoke that is like fog over us. During the late afternoon it rose a bit and we had a fresh sea breeze.  At least it is white smoke now. On Sunday it was thick black smoke and we had fine ash raining down with the occasional charred leaf. Apparently the smoke from the fires in Victoria has reached almost to Tasmania.

Yep, we got smoke in Geelong yesterday. There was a fire in the bush area of Waurn Ponds yesterday too.

 

Crazy.

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Today is the worst bushfire day in 6 years  for my state of Victoria, Australia. There are many bushfires burning out of control in my area. Towns 15 minutes away are being evacuated as I write. it is 41oC with a very strong hot northly wind pushing the fires closer. there will be a wind change in 2 hours that will bring 100 km /h winds that are meant to drive the fires onto private property and farmland. the sky is very dark with smoke. It is awful. If you click on the link that Rosie posted up  in the thread you will see all the fires marked out.

 

The worst thing is the lack of information on the exact location of the fire. it would be helpful if they gave roads or something of where the fires are instead of areas.

 

Hey Chicks :)

We've made it our business not to be home all week, after not being able to get home from the city on Sunday. (Going home today though)  The fire isn't out, but it is contained for now. It didn't get near us, comparatively speaking, but it was heading in our direction. If it billows up again and crosses the Northern, we'll run away again!

 

 

 

Melissa, check the Vicroads website for road closures. Sometimes that's more helpful than the CFA site.

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thanks for the tip Rosie. unfortunately on that day the Vic roads site was of no help. the road past our place was closed. I have no Idea why, we had to go round the roadblock (sneak) to get to Marlo to collect the mail. The closest fire is on the other side of the Princess Highway, about 10 km away as the crow flies.

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Rosie so glad you checked in and are safe. Sorry you are still dealing with it and had to be away so long. We have rain here by the bucketload today so hopefully some makes it over your way soon.

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