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On Fire: Australia Battles Deadliest Natural Disaster in History

Victoria, Australia is welcoming cooler weather, as authorities say it will take several more days to contain blazes that have killed over 100 people.

On site last weekend, Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd proclaimed: "Hell and all its fury has visited the good people of Victoria in the past 24 hours." These residents can thank a record breaking heatwave and perhaps arsonists for the hellish experience.

Australia's federal government will be there to help pick up the pieces, and the tab, for those who suffered damage, thanks to a $10 million disaster relief fund. Each adult will get $1,000 and an extra $400 for each child. Victims can apply for other grants, such as a re-establishment grant, totaling $26,000.

Do you think governments should pay for disaster relief and reconstruction?


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sailing-chick sailing-chick 8 years
What ferris has said is correct - our trees just explode with the intese heat. Luckily we've had some cooler weather that has helped our firefighters but the fires are still going strong. My prayers are with everyone fighting and those that have lost so much. Black Saturday will never be forgotten.
sailing-chick sailing-chick 8 years
What ferris has said is correct - our trees just explode with the intese heat. Luckily we've had some cooler weather that has helped our firefighters but the fires are still going strong. My prayers are with everyone fighting and those that have lost so much.Black Saturday will never be forgotten.
ferris ferris 8 years
Michelin, take care of it? Its not that simple. Fires in Australia are pretty much standard through the summer - this can be a yearly event for us, although this one in particular is our worst in recorded history, just based on the number of deaths. The Eucalyptus oil in the gum trees turn to gas when the fire hits them and they literally explode. In that kind of heat, with arsonists and lightning strikes the wind made it impossible to stop. Like trying to stop a tornado. It just can't be done. A very, very sad event in our history and sadly not over yet. 4 days later there are still fires burning out of control.
ferris ferris 8 years
Michelin, take care of it? Its not that simple. Fires in Australia are pretty much standard through the summer - this can be a yearly event for us, although this one in particular is our worst in recorded history, just based on the number of deaths. The Eucalyptus oil in the gum trees turn to gas when the fire hits them and they literally explode. In that kind of heat, with arsonists and lightning strikes the wind made it impossible to stop. Like trying to stop a tornado. It just can't be done. A very, very sad event in our history and sadly not over yet. 4 days later there are still fires burning out of control.
kafarine-tin-tin kafarine-tin-tin 8 years
They say they are close to catching the arsonists, and have one suspect. It really is mass murder, over 170 people dead.So sad.
kafarine-tin-tin kafarine-tin-tin 8 years
They say they are close to catching the arsonists, and have one suspect. It really is mass murder, over 170 people dead. So sad.
Michelann Michelann 8 years
My sister moved to Australia a few weeks ago and now it seems like there's nothing but bad news for the country. Luckily she's not in Victoria. I hope they can get this taken care of before anybody else is hurt.
amers230 amers230 8 years
i think the morons who restarted the fires should be the ones paying for the disaster relief and reconstruction. jacka**es
amers230 amers230 8 years
i think the morons who restarted the fires should be the ones paying for the disaster relief and reconstruction. jacka**es
bleached bleached 8 years
I read on the BBC that some of the fires were started by an arsonist...
Great-Sommelier Great-Sommelier 8 years
Do you think governments should pay for disaster relief and reconstruction?To a point.
Great-Sommelier Great-Sommelier 8 years
Do you think governments should pay for disaster relief and reconstruction? To a point.
starangel82 starangel82 8 years
So sad. And I think it's great the Australian government is helping the victims out.
nyaradzom2001 nyaradzom2001 8 years
the fire was put out at first and then someone aholes reset the fire so they committed a mass murder. I hope they are caught and spend years being slowly burned to death as a punishment.
momma-tikita momma-tikita 8 years
My God that is horrible.
momma-tikita momma-tikita 8 years
My God that is horrible.
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