We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Black Saturday Bushfires

essay
The whole doc is available only for registered users OPEN DOC

A limited time offer! Get a custom sample essay written according to your requirements urgent 3h delivery guaranteed

Order Now

Saturday, 7th February 2009 was one of the darkest days to dawn upon the whole of Australia. But mostly towards the people of Victoria, it is now known as Black Saturday. Black Saturday was a series of bushfires that ignited or were burning across Victoria during extreme bushfire-weather conditions, resulting in Australia’s highest ever loss of life from a bushfire.

Conditions:

Majority of the fires ignited and spread on a day of some of the worst bushfire conditions ever recorded. Temperatures in the mid to high 40s with wind speeds in excess of 100 km/h, which fanned the fires over large distances and areas which created several large firestorms and pyrocumulus systems.

A pyrocumulus is literally a fire cloud, it is a dense cumuliform cloud associated with fire or volcanic activity.

A cool change hit the state in the early evening, bringing with it gale-force south-westerly wings in excess of 120 km/h. This change in wind direction caused the long eastern flanks of the fires to become massive fire fronts that burned with incredible speed and ferocity towards towns that had earlier escaped the flames.

This picture contains not only black Saturday but other major fires in the past.

2002- Big Desert Fire

2003- Great Divide

2005- Wilson’s Prom

2006- Grampians

2006-07- Victorian Alps

2009- Black Saturday

Effects.

The Fires of Black Saturday destroyed over 2,029 houses, 3,500 + structures in total and damaged thousands more. Many towns north-east of the state capital Melbourne were badly damaged or almost lost altogether such as Kinglake, Marysville, Narbethong, Stathewen and Flowerdale.

Many houses in the towns of Steels Creek, Humevale, Wandong, St Andrews, Callignee, Taggerty and Koornalla were also destroyed or severely damaged, with several fatalities recorded at each location. Fires affected 78 individual townships in total and displaced an estimated 7,562 people, many of whom sought temporary accommodation, much of it donated in the form of spare rooms, caravans, tents and beds in community relief centres. As a result of Black Saturday in total 173 people died and 414 were injured.

This Picture is showing the remains of a house and shed as the sun is setting on the eve of Black Saturday.

Causes:

Majority of the fires were ignited by fallen or clashing power lines or were deliberately lit. Other suspected ignition sources include lightning, cigarette butts, and sparks from a power tool.

More distantly implicated was a major drought that has persisted from more than a decade, as well as a domestic 50-year warming trend that has been linked to human-included climate change (global warming, greenhouse effects etc.). Mid March, favourable conditions aided containment efforts and extinguished the fires.

More Photos of destruction from Black Saturday.

Background.

This graph is showing the maximum and minimum temperatures for Melbourne for the 25th of January to the 9th of February. The day of Black Saturday 7th February, temperatures reached 46.4° C. But even for those 15 days it was very warm.

Events of February 7th

With over 3500 fire fighting personal were deployed across the state on the morning in anticipation of the extreme conditions. By mid-morning, hot north-westerly winds in excess of 100 km/h hit the state, accompanied by extremely high temperatures and extremely low humidity.

As the day progressed, all-time record temperatures were being reached, 46.4°C in Melbourne, which was the hottest temperature ever recorded in an Australian Capital City and humidity levels dropped to as low as 6%.

By Midday, wind speeds were reaching their peak and by 12:30 pm, powerlines were felled in Kilmore East by the high winds, sparking a bushfire that would later generate extensive pyrocumulus cloud and become the largest, deadliest and most intense firestorm ever experienced in Australia’s post-European history. The overwhelming majority of fire activity occurred between midday and 7pm.

Bibliography.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Saturday_bushfires

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrocumulus_cloud

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/5b/Melbourne_City_Heatwave_Min
_%26_Max_Temps_09_%28Concept%29.png

All Pictures and photos were from Google Images.

Related Topics

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay
Get Access To The Full Essay
icon
300+
Materials Daily
icon
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
icon
Free Plagiarism
Checker
icon
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access
immediately?

Become a member

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!

logo

Emma Taylor

online

Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Can't find What you were Looking for?

Get access to our huge, continuously updated knowledge base

The next update will be in:
14 : 59 : 59
Become a Member