Today’s high temperatures, accompanied by strong winds, have set the fire danger on much of the east coast to extreme.
But in Australia it’s not just a risk, bush fires are raging across Victoria.
A friend whose house burned down years ago said the greatest loss was of photos and treasures, not necessarily valuable in a monetary way but because of personal associations.
However, those are only things and can’t be compared with loss of life and 76 people are now confirmed dead as a result of the Victorian fires.
Kevin Rudd said hell and its fury had been unleashed on the state.
At the same time, in a tragic irony, Queensland is under flood.
More than 60 per cent of Queensland is under water – 1 million square kilometers, or twice the area of Spain. Ingham has been hardest hit, with 2,900 homes damaged or flooded in a weekend storm and hundreds of people evacuated.
The main cities on northern Queensland’s coast, Townsville and Cairns, were flooded in January storms and are still receiving daily rain. The main highways to Townsville were cut off by water this week and some northern towns have been isolated for weeks.
The devastation is not restricted to property, three people are missing, including a five year old who it is feared was taken by a crocodile.