Saturday, January 5, 2013


Photo credit: Kellie Spicer
Late yesterday afternoon I drove into the centre of Hobart for an appointment on what was the hottest day on record in Tasmania's capital city, according to this story in The Australian: 41.8 degrees Celsius at 4pm. It felt like it too. Walking down Collins Street felt like standing in front of an open oven or pointing a hairdryer at myself. Dry and fierce heat. I was grateful for the air conditioning in the car.

David took a picture (left) of our temperature reader at home, showing more than 40 degrees, but even more telling, only 7 percent humidity. No wonder bush fires were popping up all over Tasmania. Driving back into the Huon Valley from Hobart after 5pm it looked a lot like our friend Kellie's beautiful photo above.

Today, the air in our valley is thick with smoke and the smell of burning is everywhere. But we are the lucky ones, as the fires were not near us this time. According to news reports, more than 100 properties in Tasmania have been destroyed by the latest round of fires. There were fires close to our home in early December that had us worried and ready to leave with our pets and documents. We have little hope of being able to defend our property and a relatively clear path down to the river, so we plan to leave early if necessary. Where we live, it is critical for everyone to prepare their homes as best they can and have a fire plan so they can decide and act quickly if there is danger from bush fires. It is such a frightening thing for everyone affected. I hope no lives have been lost. The heartbreaking photos of wildlife and livestock running from the fires are bad enough.

1 comment:

  1. Yeah our fire plan is simple. Any sign leave. We also have little chance of defending where we are on the edge of Cygnet and Cradoc.