At least 25 people have lost their lives to the fires, while around 2000 homes have been destroyed, and horrifically, over half a billion animals have been killed, according to estimates. The fires have burned through 5.25 million hectares (13 million acres) of land, the likes of which nothing has seen before and it shows no sign of slowing down.
While people try to inhibit the fires as best they can, using their own means, there’s a general disdain for the Australian government who seemingly have other things on their mind.
That’s not to say that government workers haven’t been hard at work though – just their parliament – as the police have arrested nearly 200 people who have been linked to starting bushfires since November.
In the states of Queensland, New South Wales (NSW), Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania, 183 people have been arrested for 205 separate bushfire-related charges.
Over in New South Wales, a total of 24 people were charged for deliberately lighting bushfires, with a further 53 people facing legal action for not acknowledging the blanket fire ban. Meanwhile, to highlight how serious the situation is, 47 people have been accused of improperly disposing of a cigarette or match.
Queensland has seen 103 fires deliberately lit, with 98 people being identified as culprits and 67 of them being minors. Per The Epoch Times:
“Under the NSW Crimes Act, the Rural Fires Act, and Rural Fires Regulation, penalties relating to lighting bushfires include up to 25 years in prison for damaging property with the intention of endangering life and 21 years in prison for starting a bushfire and and being reckless as to its spread.
“Those caught lighting a fire when a total fire ban is in place risk up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a A$5,500 fine, while those seen lighting or using a tobacco product within 15 metres of any stack of grain, hay corn, straw or any standing crop, dry grass, or stubble field could receive a fine of up to A$5,500.“
Dr. Paul Read, co-director of the National Centre for Research in Bushfire and Arson, recently revealed to ABC that 85% of bushfires are caused by humans, whether it be deliberately or otherwise. He explained:
“About 85 per cent are related to human activity, 13 per cent confirmed arson and 37 per cent suspected arson.
“The remainder are usually due to reckless fire lighting or even just children playing with fire.”
Images via Getty
Alfie Powell joined as an apprentice and was probably hired because he was likely the only person who applied. He's been blagging his way through writing articles for four years now and he's definitely showing signs of slowing down. When not writing for The Hook, Alfie finds time to indulge in his favourite hobbies, such as drinking and sitting down. You can contact Alfie at [email protected]Follow