The bushfires in New South Wales seem – after great efforts by the fire services – to be under control. No doubt some rain has helped.
Of course some of the great unwashed immediately blamed “global warming”. The self proclaimed – and now self-employed – “Climate Council” was of course leading the charge. Tony Abbott called their claims “hogwash” but he was being rather polite. The bushfires are an annual event every spring and have occurred every year for at least the last 200 years. It may well be something that has ocurred annually for over 10,000 years.
It now transpires that in addition to natural causes, many of the fires were caused by accidents (the army’s exercises and power lines) and some were caused by juvenile delinquents – some as young as 8 years old! It could be that the power lines initiated this latest outbreak.
The Climate Council is drowning in its own self-importance and is indeed replete with hogwash – and much of that is intentional.
THE Department of Defence was last night found to have caused the State Mine Blaze near Lithgow, which has so far burnt out more than 46,000ha, led to one home being destroyed and three others damaged, and narrowly avoided turning into a “mega-fire”.
The Rural Fire Service said an investigation had found a Department of Defence training exercise last week was responsible for the fire, west of the Blue Mountains, but the department said last night that there was still no definitive evidence that defence personnel had inadvertently started the blaze.
“The investigation has concluded the fire started as a result of exploding ordnances on the range on (last) Wednesday,” a RFS spokesman said.
- POLICE detained two eight-year-old boys near East Maitland on the NSW North Coast last night after they were found trying to start a fire.Officers found the boys trying to use a lighter to set fire to dried leaves and grass on vacant land near Quarry St around 6:30pm AEST. A concerned resident called police to the scene and the lighter was later found to be “inoperable”, the law enforcement agency said in a statement.
No charges were laid because of their age.
- AFTER one night in custody, the 11-year-old boy accused of lighting a 5000ha Hunter Valley bushfire walked free from court yesterday, flipping the bird to media waiting outside. …. The boy pleaded not guilty in Newcastle Children’s Court to two counts of starting a bushfire and recklessly causing its spread – a charge that carries a maximum sentence of two years’ detention for minors. But conviction records from the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Records show just one offender aged under 18 has ended up in detention for the offence in the past three years. The 11-year-old accused of lighting the October 13 Heatherbrae fire allegedly started another blaze earlier that day in the nearby suburb of Raymond Terrace.
- Bushfire risks posed by powerline failures are in the spotlight following last week’s crisis in New South Wales, …… In the wake of the NSW bushfire crisis, Four Corners has examined almost four decades worth of evidence into the cause and impact of major bushfires. Some of the most catastrophic bushfires in Australia’s history have been started by powerline failure. It is believed the most devastating fires in NSW last week began as a result of damaged powerlines. In Victoria’s Murrindindi fire in 2009, which led to 40 deaths on Black Saturday, police initially focused their investigation on an alleged arsonist. However, after abandoning that line of inquiry, a case is now being made that a fallen powerline ignited the blaze. Law firm Maurice Blackburn is representing victims of the Murrindindi fire in a class action against power company SP Ausnet. The company rejects accusations its wire caused the fire. If proven, it means 93 per cent of the deaths on Black Saturday – Australia’s worst bushfire disaster – were caused by fires started by powerlines. ….. The issue of powerlines has not been at the centre of public debate. The program also found power companies have known since 1974 that their lines can cause fires. …… The Rural Fire Service, however, has said it believes fires in Salt Ash, Mount Victoria and Springwood were started by powerlines. Together, these fires destroyed 204 homes and damaged 110.