Australians learned so much from the Ash Wednesday bushfires (I was living in Melbourne at the time and still visit as often as I can); there was a sense that although everyone knew bushfires are capricious and dangerous, that there were things to do to mitigate them. That all changed this week.
The combination of years of inadequate rainfall, record high temperatures, and arson meant there was no escape, no hope for those caught in the bushfire's path. There are thousands of people out there fighting for people and animals, hoping and praying for the rain that is the only solution. The Australian Broadcasting Corporation Melbourne news site tells the story.
I can't find the right words to express my sorrow and sympathies for those who lost family and friends in this horrific way. All I can do is point people who want to help to some of the appropriate venues. There's the Australian Red Cross, the Australian Salvation Army, and some organisations to help with animals and wildlife.