On this day: the Black Thursday Bushfires | In Times Gone By…

As depicted by English-born artist William Strutt in 1864.

As depicted by English-born artist William Strutt in 1864.

One of the worst bushfire disasters in recorded Australian history, the Black Thursday…

via On this day: the Black Thursday Bushfires | In Times Gone By…

3 thoughts on “On this day: the Black Thursday Bushfires | In Times Gone By…

  1. This bushfire is worst only in the sense of the area burnt (5 million hectares/19,000+ square miles). Twelve deaths are recorded. Most of measure the severity of a bushfire by the loss of human life. By far the worst bushfire was 2009 Black Saturday fires here in Victoria , ‘only’ 450,000 hectares burnt but there were 173 deaths. From memory the temperature reached about 46 degrees C in Melbourne. Prior to that there were heavy tolls in terms of human life in Victoria in 1926 (60 people and 260,000 ha) and 1939 Black Saturday (71 people and 2 million ha.), in Victoria and South Australia in 1983 Ash Wednesday (75 people and 418,000 ha) and in Tasmania in 1967 Black Tuesday (62 people and 264,000 ha). There are many others with a sizable human toll. The descriptor Black is appropriate for a number of reasons. Prior to the Ash Wednesday fires in 1983 there had been a prolonged drought and on 8 Feb there was a giant dust storm which brought the red dust from the Mallee and Wimmera ( roughly 250 miles away) through Melbourne. This was the topsoil from the severely drought affected areas. I was working in the city at the time and the dust billowed down the streets, darkening the sky. The fires occured a week later on Ash Wednesday, 16 Feb. Often with these fires ash carries on the air, and although I lived near the middle of the city, miles from the fires, I came home to ash on the window sills. Bushfire is a word that strike terror into the heart of any Australian.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not in the least surprised the word strikes terror. Several friends of mine emigrated to Australia in the 80s and 90s and I always panic when I see news of a bushfire and check how close to danger my friends are. Thank you, Catherine, for these extra details.

      Liked by 1 person

What are your thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.