Australia is quite prone to bushfires. That is the type of annual natural hazard that we have to live with. Spring hasn’t started well for Sydney this year. It was not particularly hot. Some days were warm at close to 30 degree Celsius. Other days were cooler at mid 20’s. not particularly unusual.
A few weeks back, there was a warm weekend. Residents had all sorts of fun at the beach. However, at the Olympic Aquatic Centre at Homebush, a fire broke out and burned down about 20 cars at the carpark. Suspected cause? A (possibly carelessly) discarded cigarette butt.
What was unusual was the chilly wind that contrasted against the warm days. We had to grab our lighter winter blankets back from storage for the evenings. And it was probably the wind that worsened the situation.
Throughout the week, we were hearing about bushfires in the Blue Mountains – on the western edge of Sydney. Thursday was very windy and by the afternoon, sky was enveloped with bushfire haze and the smell of burnt wood was in the air. It was particularly intense on this day. The sky turned every colour except for blue. And the fires raged on in the Blue Mountains. Many houses have burned down and so far there is one fatality.
It is sadly troubling to often hear that young kids as well as equally irresponsible adults (some of whom are know to be part of the fire fighting crews) are caught for starting fires.
The rest of the week is forecast for extreme temperatures. Rain is forecast and hopefully this will help with the fire fighting. Summer is not upon us yet. Hopefully, this year will not become a record breaking disaster.