Incompetence, chaos and lack of direct attack on bushfires in far East Gippsland saw 170,000 ha burnt in January and February this year. Why did this happen when so much more could have been done? Many of the problems experienced were avoidable. The Emergency Services Commissioner and Minister has only offered an internal review. The community is demanding an inquiry to fully explore why it was handled as it was. You can help by signing this petition. Two clicks and it’s done. www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/kim-wells-set-up-an-independent-public-inquiry-into-the-east-gippsland-red-sunday-bush-fires
Numerous inquiries after fires admit to problems and identify solutions, yet nothing changes. An inquiry is critical to ensure other rural communities don’t pay the high price of government failings. It must investigate why the disarray remains.
Houses, assets, livestock, thousands of native animals and some of the state’s most beautiful forests in the Snowy National Park might have been saved if there was proper preparation, communication, effective use of resources and timely deployment of machines and fire fighters.
The fire edge was deliberately increased daily and left unattended. Water use and strategic direct attack was minimal. Government fire agencies failed communities in basic and obvious ways.
The cost of the fires came to over $100 million and the fire continued for 58 days.This must also be scrutinised.
Please tell the Minister and Commissioner that an internal review is not good enough. An open and independent inquiry must be ordered.