What Is Australia's Worst Bushfire?


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Daisy Sarma Profile
Daisy Sarma answered
There are two instances that can be considered the worst bushfires in Australia, in terms of the number of lives lost. The worst Australian bushfire ignited way back in 1939. On 13 January of 1939, a Friday, there were a series of bushfires that spread across the state of Victoria. The fires were devastating, consuming in their wake millions of hectares of vegetation and destroying the flora and fauna of those lands, besides also ending up with the deaths of 71 people. That date is set in Australian memory as Back Friday, owing to the devastation that happened on that one single day. Another such instance of a major bushfire was the series of fires that raged again in Victoria, and also South Australia, in the year 1983. In that year, on February 16, about a hundred fires sparked off, ending again in the deaths of 69 people and also consumption of the flora and fauna of thousands of hectares of land. That day is known as Ash Wednesday.

In both the instances, the raging natural furnaces were fanned by strong winds, a common trait associated with bushfires. The Ash Wednesday fires were triggered by sparks from electricity lines and also man-made fires that were not stomped out. In all, the Ash Wednesday fires raged across over 400,000 hectares of land, and caused over $450 million worth of damage to property.
Rajesh Shri Profile
Rajesh Shri answered
Australia, the Land Down Under, is unique in its geological history, terrain and wild-life. The country is a favourite tourist destination around the world. It is a favourite with adventure seekers and lovers of natural and man-made beauty. The pleasant weather all year round and proximity to the sea, has been popular with vacationers for many years. However, the diverse terrain that flaunts both woods and desert is known to experience the extremes of nature at a number of places. The open terrain is famous for suddenly springing to life and flame, on hot days. The temperatures in some regions of the bush are known to soar beyond 50 degrees Celsius!

Of all the known and chronicled bushfires was the one that broke out on the 13th of January, 1939, in Victoria, Australia. The January temperatures that year were unheard of and the resultant natural fire charred 4942000 acres of land. It claimed 71 lives, 700 homes and 69 saw-mills in the vicinity. The open fire raged on that Friday, fanned by a northerly wind that simply paved the way. The temperatures in the surroundings for days later refused to drop below the 45 degree Celsius mark. The chronicled evidence still remains fresh in the minds of many.

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