Victorian Bushfires 2019 – Gippsland

Ms BATH (Eastern Victoria) (15:29:50): Once again our beautiful Gippsland region is suffering from major fires. There are so many fires. Dargo, Licola, Yinnar South and environs and the Bunyip complex fires have wreaked havoc this weekend. Distressed residents have fled from their homes. Thankfully so many homes have been saved, but some have been lost. Years of treasured possessions and memories are gone. Other have lost vital infrastructure, sheds and equipment. Thankfully not too many livestock have been lost. I am in awe of the hundreds of brave and dedicated emergency service workers who have been and are still battling these fires—our hardworking front line in the CFA, SES and VicPol and all those behind the front line, who provide that valuable information and recovery response, and a shout-out to Lardner Park, who housed the horses brought out from the Bunyip fire. Visiting the Drouin and Morwell relief centres over the weekend, it was just so wonderful to see the compassion that our fellow people provide each other. We had volunteers from the Red Cross, St John’s Ambulance and the Victorian Council of Churches. Our local council staff were working tremendously well, and our councillors were feeding people and quite literally wrapping their arms around people. My heart goes out to those people who have lost their precious possessions, but we are so thankful that we have not lost any lives in this situation.