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February 10th, 2009
04:35 PM ET

Frustration for survivors as Australian bushfires smolder

CNN

As fires smoldered and sometimes raged across sections of the scarred landscape Tuesday, rescue officials in Victoria attempted to offer solace to hundreds burned out of their homes and frustrated at being unable to return.

Tent cities sprung up around Whittlesea, just north of Melbourne, as relief agencies pitched camps for those forced out of their homes.

Weekend bushfires "completely wiped out" the towns of Marysville and Kinglake, officials said. More than 20 fires were burning Tuesday, according to the Country Fire Authority.

Frustration also brewed as residents desperately wanted to return to their homes, or what was left of them, but were prevented by authorities because of safety concerns.

The toll from Saturday's inferno has grown day by day. Police in the state of Victoria put the number of deaths from the fires at 181 on Tuesday.

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Filed under: Global 360°
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Josh

    Gary Tuckman's story on the fires was well done. But at the end in the "miraculous survivor" part. The fire fighter rescued a koala, NOT a KOALA BEAR! Come on guys! Everyone knows they're marsupials. AC it makes you look bad too!

    February 11, 2009 at 8:12 am |
  2. Lisa L

    Dear Anderson,

    I enjoy watching your show.

    I am happy to see the support everyone is giving to the people affected by the bushfires.

    Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    Lisa L
    Sydney, Australia

    February 10, 2009 at 9:46 pm |
  3. Annie Kate

    I've been following this story for over a week now and it is just truly awful. This area has had a drought for the last 3 to 4 years and then this year experienced an intense heat wave unprecedented in its temperature extremes. The fires, which one might have expected under these circumstances, were acknowledged as being possible and all citizens put on the alert to watch for fires, thinking they would occur naturally (lightning strike, etc). However, these fires were set – arson – Australia is calling it mass murder. Its hard to understand why anyone would set a fire to begin with but under such circumstances that would easily lead to a large loss of life its just unthinkable. I feel for these people – all they have lost and the people that have died. What a terrible tragedy.

    February 10, 2009 at 7:00 pm |
  4. Marcus

    I have a friend in Melborn, and he is saying it is the worst site he has ever witnessed. Wish all of them the best!

    February 10, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  5. Max

    So awful.

    February 10, 2009 at 5:37 pm |