On 09/02/2009, at 4:35 AM, Nick Arnett wrote:

> On Sun, Feb 8, 2009 at 9:15 AM, Rceeberger <rceeber...@comcast.net>  
> wrote:
>
>> Repeating the call-out on the Culture list.
>> Are our Aussie friends doing OK?
>> We worry for you.
>
>
> Yeah... 96 dead.  Sounding too much like the Oakland Hills firestorm  
> times
> 10.  Already four times as many killed.

I'm sitting watching news on Monday morning - it's 108 confirmed dead  
now, and firefighters haven't managed to get into the worst affected  
areas yet.

It was almost a "perfect storm" for fire conditions. We had record low  
rainfall in January, with a record heatwave in the last week of  
January. Then on 7 Feb, we had the hottest day ever recorded in  
Victoria, with it hitting 46.4 in Melbourne, and hotter in some parts  
of the states. There were 80kmh winds. So when the fires started,  
there was not much that could be done. Several are still uncontained.  
A lot of people left their properties too late, and died on the roads.

Charlie.
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