Australia navy rescues people from fire-hit town

Australia navy rescues people from fire-hit town
Evacuees were taken from the shore to larger ships. Source: Fran Lawson
2 Min Read

Daily US Times, Sydney: The Australian navy has started helping the evacuation of the trapped residents and tourists. The navy has evacuated 1000 people from the fire-ravaged town of Mallacoota on the Victoria coast.

Navy’s landing vessels took people to two ships- MV Sycamore and HMAS Choules. Local MP Darren Chester called the evacuation an “unprecedented mass relocation of civilians”.

Mallacoota is the worst affected city by the current bushfire crisis. More than 4,000 residents and tourists fled the town to the beach on Monday night to rescue themselves.

Navy said evacuees will be taken to Western Port after around 16 hours’ voyage.

Military helicopters are also deployed to rescue people as roads cut off by the fire. On Thursday more than 60 people were rescued by helicopter. The rescue operation had to halt for smoky air conditions.

The evacuees were allowed to take their pets on the ship. Source: Darren Chester MP via Twitter

The larger ship, HMAS Choules, has a “few hundred beds”, but further trips are possible if depend on raises. People are allowed to take their pets on the ship.

The Premier of Victoria state Daniel Andrews declared a state of disaster for six areas and resorts, including Mallacoota.

Fire forecast for Saturday says high temperature and heavy winds can further escalate the situation to “widespread extreme fire danger”.

Emergency management commissioner for Victoria Andrew Crisp warned people to leave as soon as possible on Friday.

He said ”This is your opportunity to get out. It is not just the fires we know. It is the new fires that might start today.”