Tag: Cudlee Creek

Are bushfire fundraisers pushing other charities to the brink?

Adelaide 5000

Charitable organisations around Australia say they are seeing a major decline in their funds due to the many generous donations made to those affected by Australia’s recent bushfires.

Key points:

  • The Little Heroes Foundation chairman says donations have ground to a halt
  • He says many Australian charities are struggling due to the many bushfire appeals
  • A woman diagnosed with cancer in 2017 says charities provide vital support

Adelaide-based charity Little Heroes Foundation, which helps seriously ill children, is on the brink of closing its doors after 24 years of operating, with donations coming to a complete standstill.

It comes after strong financial support for victims of South Australia’s recent bushfire disasters, as well as victims of the bushfire disasters in Victoria, New South Wales and Victoria.

Little Heroes chairman Chris McDermott said he was holding onto a sliver of hope the charity would make it through, but he was not sure what the future looked like.

“It’s probably the least confident I’ve ever been, but again, the reality is the families challenged by serious illness, whether it be cancer or other serious illness, they’re still there and they still need help,” Mr McDermott said.

He said since December, donations and contributions from the public had ground to a halt.

“The way the Australian public have rallied to the [bushfire] cause has been one of the most inspirational things I have ever witnessed,” he said.

“On the flip side, it has impacted a lot of other charities, which you sort of understand, but for us that aren’t government funded it’s made a huge impact.

“Because we’re not government funded we rely on every dollar we make through events or donations and that has come to an absolute standstill. It’s pretty tough times.


CFS crews work with locals during the Cudlee Creek blaze in the Adelaide Hills. (Facebook: Eden Hills CFS)

“All charities in terms of donations at the moment are finding it difficult and it’s certainly our toughest time in our 24 years.”

Five in six Australians give financially to charities or not-for-profit organisations, with 20 per cent of people donating once a month, according to the Australian Community Trends Report, published last year.

According to the report, charities recorded a total revenue of $142.8 billion in the past year.

Charities a necessary support for sick Australians

Jeanne Moloney-Nicholls, 58, was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in 2017.

She said her experience showed why supporting charities was vital.

“I’ve had a double mastectomy, 11 lymph nodes, my brachial nerve all removed. I’ve had six months of chemotherapy where I lost all of my hair, my eyebrows, eyelashes,” she said.

“I had 25 radiation sessions, which I was pretty much burnt severely, bright red, blistered burns, which to me was probably the most horrific part of the journey.”

After her treatment was complete, Ms Moloney-Nicholls moved to Adelaide, where she has been visiting the Cancer Care Centre.


Jeanne Moloney-Nicholls says charities like Cancer Care Centre “find it very hard to exist without the kindness and generosity of the donors”. (ABC News: Brittany Evins)

The not-for-profit organisation, which is funded through a combination of memberships and donations from the public, provides cancer patients with a wide range of complementary care to enhance their wellbeing.

Ms Moloney-Nicholls said the service was beneficial for people with cancer.

“It’s all the ongoing side effects that I don’t think people are aware of,” she said.

“They think once you have surgery that’s it, you must be back to normal, but you have to find your new normal and it’s not who you used to be.

“Places like the Cancer Care Centre would find it very hard to exist without the kindness and generosity of the donors.”

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news

‘I’d rather a beer’: Bushfire victim with burns to 60 per cent of his body out of induced coma

Adelaide 5000

Former Oakbank Racing Club chairman John Glatz, who suffered critical burns in the Cudlee Creek bushfire, is now awake and in a stable condition at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, his friend has confirmed.

Key points:

  • Mr Glatz suffered burns to 60 per cent of his body while defending his home in the Adelaide Hills
  • The racing community has rallied around the popular figure
  • He has now emerged from an induced coma, with a friend saying his first request was for a beer

Mr Glatz was rushed to hospital more than a fortnight ago after sustaining the injuries while trying to defend his Adelaide Hills home and horses from the Cudlee Creek inferno.

The 73-year-old has burns to 60 per cent of his body and was left “fighting for his life” as a result of the deadly fire which claimed the life of 69-year-old Charleston man Ron Selth.

Mr Selth’s body was found at his property the day after the fire broke out, while Mr Glatz has been in an induced coma at the hospital’s intensive care unit.

Fellow horse trainer John Hickmott said he was overjoyed when he heard, through the racing community, of his long-time friend’s progress.

“They just said he’s alert and he’s awake, they got the tubes out and he’s speaking,” Mr Hickmott said.

“The first thing they said was ‘would you like a drink of water?’ and he said ‘I’d rather a beer’. When he said that, you know he’s in good spirits.”


The Cudlee Creek blaze spread rapidly after breaking out in catastrophic conditions. (ABC News: Chris McLoughlin)

Mr Hickmott said his friend had shown remarkable spirit by pulling through.

“When you get the amount of burns that he was supposed to have, it’s pretty hard for a man his age to fight that off,” he said.

“Someone did say that he is a tough old bugger, if anyone can get out of this, he will and he has which is amazing.”

Racing club offers ‘heartfelt thank you’ to Hills community

The Oakbank Racing Club previously offered its thoughts and prayers to the “much-loved committee member, John Glatz and his family”.

“Oakbank Racing Club is working to support the community impacted by the fires,” it said.

The Adelaide Hills is a popular region for horse owners and the town of Oakbank hosts a jumps racing event each Easter.

The fire prompted a major effort to save as much as the region’s livestock as possible.

The Oakbank Racing Club yesterday posted a “heartfelt thank you” on Facebook to residents who had donated time and effort to delivering stock feed.

“Amongst the devastation of the fires over the past couple of weeks, it was wonderful to see the community band together,” the club said.


Hills resident Annie Whicker with her horse Silvah after escaping the Cudlee Creek blaze. (ABC News: Patrick Martin)

More than 80 homes were destroyed in the Cudlee Creek fire, which was not contained until a week ago — more than 11 days after breaking out.

It has been followed by other devastating blazes including on Kangaroo Island, where a father and son were killed after fighting the fires.

Thousands of livestock died in a bushfire at Keilira in the state’s south-east which burnt through almost 25,000 hectares.

Communities have begun the arduous task of rebuilding, and are doing their best to encourage tourists to visit the regions to help local economies.

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news

Fires could break containment lines in SA as temperatures soar, CFS warns

Adelaide 5000

Bushfires currently burning in South Australia could break containment lines, putting residents at higher risk, during another wave of extreme heat which will cross the state on Friday.

Key points:

  • The CFS says it is particularly concerned about the fire situation on Kangaroo Island
  • Fires could break containment lines as winds strengthen and temperatures rise above 40C
  • The CFS has urged people near existing fire grounds to enact their bushfire survival plans

As eastern Australia’s fire crisis deepens, severe to extreme fire danger has been declared in nine districts across SA, and temperatures in the mid-40s will be accompanied by hot northerly winds, ahead of a gusty change with possible lightning.

The County Fire Service (CFS) is currently battling several fires of concern, including at Ravine on Kangaroo Island, where more than 9,000 hectares of scrub and vegetation have been blackened.

A fire at Keilira in the state’s south-east has destroyed three homes, while a blaze which caused widespread blackouts on Eyre Peninsula has burnt through 11,500 hectares at Miltalie.

“If you live near any existing fires, you need to enact your bushfire survival plan as these fires may increase in ferocity,” CFS chief officer Mark Jones said yesterday.

“We’re particularly concerned about the communities and travellers on Kangaroo Island, with two fires burning [there].

“The fire conditions that we have, with a prolonged drought and very dry vegetation which is ready to burn — there’s a chance of very rapid fire spread.”

Follow our live blog for updates on bushfires and the evacuations.

There are concerns homes on Kangaroo Island have been lost after two fires merged near the Ravine Des Casoars Wilderness Protection Area.

“We anticipate that it will move in a southerly to south-easterly direction … if it breaks containment lines,” Mr Jones said.

The fireground is not far from another at Duncan, where a blaze was contained on Tuesday.


The burnt remains of a ute at De Mole River on Kangaroo Island. (Supplied: Alison Alcock)

Poor mobile phone coverage on the island has made it difficult for volunteer firefighters to communicate, local MP Leon Bignell said.

However, 20 two-way radio sets were secured after a call was put out on social media.

“If you’re holidaying over there, be vigilant again and make sure you know what is happening in your localised area,” Emergency Services Minister Corey Wingard said.

Main focus on containment, CFS says

Adelaide is heading for a top of 42 degrees Celsius on Friday, with even hotter temperatures inland, including 45C at Renmark and Roseworthy, 46C at Port Augusta and Wudinna and 47C at Oodnadatta and Tarcoola.

“Temperatures will significantly increase across the state … with dry northerly winds strengthening,” meteorologist Jon Fisher said.

“Even with that south-westerly change — it will be a fairly strong and gusty south-westerly change as it moves across the state — that does bring a risky period in terms of fire weather.”

External Link:

Bureau of Meteorology, South Australia: A #FireWeatherWarning issued for #SouthAustralia. Severe to Extreme fire danger for Friday. Very hot & dry. NE-NW winds ahead of a strong & gusty SW-S change. Thunderstorms in the west, and areas of raised dust. Check warnings here: http://bom.gov.au/sa/warnings/ and follow @CFSAlerts

Extreme fire danger has been declared for the West Coast, Lower Eyre Peninsula, Mount Lofty Ranges, Yorke Peninsula, Kangaroo Island and Lower South East districts.

Severe Fire Danger is forecast for the Eastern Eyre Peninsula, the Mid North and the Murraylands.

The CFS said while the fire danger index was not as elevated as the day the Cudlee Creek fire started in catastrophic conditions two weeks ago, the situation was now different.

“We have a number of fires which are burning which we didn’t have on that day which are likely to break out. The ignition sources are already there on this occasion,” Mr Jones said.

“The main emphasis will be on containing the fires which are currently burning.

“If they do break out, the mission turns to making sure the people in harm’s way are safe.”

Arsonists have also been warned, after a fire which came close to a campground at Rapid Bay earlier this week was declared suspicious.

“If anyone out there sees or knows anything I call on them to contact police straight away, it’s stupid and it’s not to be tolerated and we need to act as swiftly as possible when we find these people,” Mr Wingard said.

Video: Witness John Koutrikas took this video of the fire at Rapid Bay.

(ABC News)

On Thursday, victims of the deadly Cudlee Creek fire in the Adelaide Hills were invited to attend a State Government-organised meeting at Hahndorf to discuss rebuilding options.

Primary Industries Minister Tim Whetstone said the economic cost of the fires could reach $100 million.

“We’re talking about 1,200 hectares of vineyard which have been damaged,” he said.

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news

Riverbank catches fire after New Year’s Eve fireworks display


The New Year’s Eve family fireworks at Elder Park in Adelaide’s CBD sparked an emergency when a section of reeds along the River Torrens caught fire last night.

Key points:

  • Fire crews extinguished the blaze within minutes with the help of firework technicians
  • There were calls to cancel the fireworks in the Adelaide CBD
  • It comes as a number of bushfires continue to burn across the state

The incident came after numerous calls last week to cancel the fireworks display due to the potential fire risk and as a mark of respect to South Australian bushfire victims.

Footage of the fire was posted online last night, showing reeds stretching along the River Torrens catching alight just to the north of the footbridge in the Adelaide CBD.

The incident occurred following the 9:00pm fireworks at the Elder Park celebrations near Adelaide Oval in front of about 50,000 people.

The Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) said crews extinguished the blaze within minutes with the help of firework technicians.


Spectators watch a past display of the fireworks at Elder Park. (Audience submitted: Tracey Baker)

Event organisers then allowed the midnight fireworks to go ahead despite them being a much larger and more extravagant display.

External Link:

Tweet fireworks

The MFS brought in a second truck to stand by, however, the midnight display went ahead without a glitch.

The event along the River Torrens was also held as a fundraiser to assist bushfire victims.

Last week, there were also calls for Sydney’s iconic New Year’s Eve fireworks to be cancelled.

NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro was among those calling for the display to be cancelled due to the risk being “too high”.

However, the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) granted organisers an exemption from a total fire ban and the event went ahead.

Firework displays across regional NSW that were cancelled or postponed included Wollongong, Maitland, Orange, Berry, Shoalhaven, Huskisson, Armidale, Port Macquarie and Tweed Heads.

Bushfires continue to burn across SA

In South Australia, the firework concerns came in the wake of the Cudlee Creek bushfires that devastated the Adelaide Hills in the past fortnight.


Scrubland burns at Keilira, in the south-east of SA. (Supplied: CFS)

More than 80 homes were destroyed in the Cudlee Creek fire along with one person also losing their life.

Another blaze at Ravine on Kangaroo Island remains at watch and act level following more catastrophic conditions on Monday.

Three homes have been lost, thousands of livestock killed and almost 25,000 hectares have also been burned in a bushfire at Keilira, in the state’s south-east.

Cooler weather is expected to help firefighters control bushfires burning across the state today, with forecast temperatures in the mid-20s.

However, the CFS is concerned ahead of another day of hot and windy conditions on Friday, which is forecast to rise above 40C.

More bushfire coverage:

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news

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