Huge fires to the south smother city with smoke amid weather forecast for heatwave and searing temperatures as Scott Morrison prepares to address National Press Club today. Follow live news and latest updates
Moving briefly to South Australia, AAP reports that authorities there are bracing for a day of severe fire danger with special work to be conducted on the Kangaroo Island fire ground. Earthmoving equipment, water tankers and extra fire crews are being sent to strategic locations on Kangaroo Island ahead of a day of high bushfire risk. The blaze on the island is officially contained but the Country Fire Service says crews are still finding hotspots in various areas including Blue Gum Hill, Cygnet River and Vivonne Bay.
From Tuesday night. A lot of ACT residents are comparing this fire to the devastating 2003 blaze.
Just a reminder of where we’re at. On Monday, a defence helicopter landed in the Namadgi national park, south of Canberra, and accidentally sparked what authorities have called the city’s “most serious” bushfire threat since the city’s devastating 2003 fires. Tuesday saw dramatic images of the fire approaching Canberra’s southern suburbs, but conditions eased throughout the evening and the fire was downgraded from emergency level to watch and act just before midnight.
As Luke has written, fire crews are making the most of today’s milder conditions before the expected temperature rise tomorrow and on Saturday. Today ACT emergency service personnel, police and defence force members are door knocking in the southern Canberra suburbs of Banks, Gordon and Conder.
That’s all from me for now. My colleague Michael McGowan will be taking over for a while. And a reminder that Scott Morrison will be addressing the National Press Club this afternoon.
some comments from the ACT Emergency Services Agency’s incident controller, Matthew Shonk, who says authorities do not expect the fire to return to emergency level today. But Shonk says the fire is not going to be put out today or tomorrow and that conditions will worsen in coming days.
The size of the fire is currently 10,079 hectares, according to the latest update from the ACT Emergency Services Agency.
Whelan on what she called “disaster tourism”. “We’d had a number of reports from residents in the southern suburbs of the significant amount traffic coming into the southern suburbs last evening,” she said.
We are seeing some amazing photographs of the Canberra fire. Many of these photographs will have come from safe vantage points or from a person’s own property. However, the ACT’s emergency services agency commissioner, Georgeina Whelan, is asking people not to engage in “disaster tourism” by heading to head to Canberra’s southern suburbs an Instagram shot.
ACT ESA Commissioner update on , notes "disaster tourism" i.e. people heading 2 southern suburbs to take photos. "Taking a great photo for Instagram is not worth your life. It is not worth slowing down my staff, who are working to keep Canberra safe."
Last night the fires sat to the south of the station. Although pretty impressive, the station is not under threat. Matt who was looking after the station last night took the pictures.
Scott Morrison will address the National Press Club today – and excerpts of his speech indicate a key theme will be expanding the powers of the commonwealth to respond to national emergencies. First, Morrison describes the problem as he sees it:
This is some incredible footage from Martin Ollman, a photographer in Canberra.
RAW timelapse footage of the last few hours - Orroral Valley fire -Out of control
The weather over the coming days is expected to be very dry and hot in Canberra, the Bureau of Meteorology says. Wednesday is tipped to reach 36C, with the city shrouded in a smoke haze. Thursday will hit 39C, with more smoky conditions, while Friday the mercury will increase to at top 42C.
for the Orroral Valley fire warns residents in Tharwa Village, Boboyan Road, Apollo Road, and Top Naas Road to remain vigilant. “Monitor conditions and know what you will do if the fire threatens,” the ACT Emergency Services Agency says. “If you do not need to be in this area, it is still best for your safety to not enter or return.”
Yesterday, a fire started by a defence helicopter which landed in the Namadgi national park, south of Canberra, sparked what authorities called the city’s “most serious” bushfire threat since the city’s devastating 2003 fires. The Orroral Valley fire has burnt through 9,500 hectares and is expected to grow, although it is now at a watch and act level. Moderate conditions overnight allowed firefighters at the scene to strengthen containment lines.
Good morning and welcome to our coverage of the bushfires threatening Canberra today. I’m Luke Henriques-Gomes.
A story in the Los Angeles Times caused an uproar on social media after it characterized comments from Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., to say she is leaning "toward acquitting Trump" -- causing the Democratic senator to fire back that the paper “misunderstood what I said.”
The national parks are some of our country's greatest national treasures—so it's important that while we enjoy them, we also take care of them, especially when hiking and camping in backcountry areas. To help keep the parks pristine, visitors need to take an active role in maintaining them. Here's how you can make the most of the national parks and make sure you leave no trace:
Plan Ahead and Prepare
Hiking in the backcountry is inherently risky. Three miles of hiking at the high elevations in Wyoming may be much harder than three miles in your neighborhood park back home. Choose appropriate routes for mileage and elevation gain with this in mind, and carry hiking essentials.
Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
In front-country and backcountry campgrounds, camp in designated sites. Protect fragile plants by staying on trails even in mud, refusing to cut switchbacks, and walking single file. If you must walk off the trail, step on rocks, snow, or dry grasses rather than wet soil and delicate plants.
Leave What You Find
Flowers, rocks, and fur tufts on shrubs are protected park resources, as are historical and cultural items. For lunch stops and camping, sit on rocks or logs where you find them rather than moving them to accommodate comfort.
Minimize Campfire Impacts
Make fires in designated fire pits only, not on beaches. Use small wrist-sized dead and downed wood, not live branches. Be aware: Fires and collecting firewood are not permitted in some places in the parks.
Bring along binoculars, spotting scopes, and telephoto lenses to aid in watching wildlife. Keep your distance. Do not feed any wildlife, even ground squirrels. Once fed, they can become more aggressive.
Be Considerate of Other Visitors
In particular, be aware of cell phones and how their use or noise cuts into the natural soundscapes of the parks.
For formation on Leave No Trace, visit .
Ready to plan your parks adventure?
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Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison wants greater federal powers during natural disasters, local media reported on Wednesday, as authorities warned that bushfires ravaging the country for months were now sweeping through a national park outside the capital.
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President Donald Trump's lawyer Pam Bondi played a video clip of former Vice President Joe Biden recounting, at a 2018 event, how he had pressured Ukraine to fire its prosecutor general, Viktor Shokin.
The birds are chirping and the flowers are in bloom—I guess that makes a great background for murder-y people and lots of thrills—or something like that—because May has some great crime fiction releases! Whether you’re into historical, rivalries, odd pairings, thrills, or suspense there’s something here for all the mystery-loving hearts.
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Jamie Canavés is a Book Riot contributing editor and Coordinator who always has a book in one hand. She writes the mystery newsletter, never says no to chocolate or ‘80s nostalgia, and spends way too much time asking her goat-dog “What’s in your mouth?!” Tweets: @Oh_Dinky.