I am sitting safely in my workroom, listening to the ABC. Both facts are important, because as a result of a very hot, dry windy day, there are many bushfires out of control in Victoria. I am safe, but many other Victorians are not. The ABC is the emergency broadcaster.
There are Emergency Warnings for fast moving out of control fires, often for places I have never heard of. There are Watch Alerts for other places ~ leave now before the situation becomes too dangerous or be prepared to stay and fight. It is very volatile at the moment, and new fires become more threatening by the minute. Spot fires. Ember attacks. Danger.
Road closures abound. Amazingly our major highways are closed. The Princes Highway, the coastal highway between Melbourne and Sydney, is closed because of fires in Gippsland. The Hume Highway is closed ~ that’s the major route from Melbourne to Sydney. And the Calder is closed too, the highway between Melbourne and Bendigo, one of Victoria’s major rural cities.
I feel so much for those places and people who are in danger. But perhaps it is the and people places that you know that makes the most impact. There are fires to the north and east of Melbourne, outlying suburbs. Gisborne, Riddels Creek and Mickleham. Hey, I know someone who teaches at Mickleham Primary School! We travel thorough Riddels Creek to get to Echuca and the fire there is causing concern. That’s sort of just up the road.
And in Warrandyte, which is an eastern suburb of Melbourne, is my blogging friend Meeks. The threat of fires always alarms her and she has prepared her property well. You may have come across Meeks lately, because she last week she blogged about my garlic print. She had bought the print from me and wanted to spread the word. Such a nice thing to do. I popped the print into the post office yesterday. I am hoping that all is well with her and that her print arrives as a “Thank goodness you are safe” present.
It was a catastrophe last time we had fires like this, when 173 people died. So the whole state is very anxious and on edge. My thoughts are with all those impacted.