Ash Wednesday Bushfires
The Ash Wednesday bushfires, known in South Australia as Ash Wednesday II, were a series of bushfires that occurred in south-eastern Australia on 16 February 1983, which was Ash Wednesday in the Christian calendar. Within twelve hours, more than 180 fires fanned by winds of up to 110 km/h (68 mph) caused widespread destruction across the states of Victoria and South Australia. Years of severe drought and extreme weather combined to create one of Australia's worst fire days in a century. The fires became the deadliest bushfire in Australian history, until the Black Saturday bushfires in 2009.
In Victoria, 47 people died, while in South Australia there were 28 deaths. This included 14 CFA and 3 CFS volunteer fire-fighters who died across both states that day. Many fatalities were as a result of firestorm conditions caused by a sudden and violent wind change in the evening which rapidly changed the direction and size of the fire front. The speed and ferocity of the flames, aided by abundant fuels and a landscape immersed in smoke, made fire suppression and containment impossible. In many cases, residents fended for themselves as fires broke communications, cut off escape routes and severed electricity and water supplies. Up to 8,000 people were evacuated in Victoria at the height of the crisis and a state of disaster was declared for the first time in South Australia's history.
Ash Wednesday was one of Australia's costliest natural disasters. Over 3,700 buildings were destroyed or damaged and 2,545 individuals and families lost their homes. Livestock losses were very high, with over 340,000 sheep, 18,000 cattle and numerous native animals either dead or later destroyed. A total of 4,540 insurance claims were paid totalling A$176 million with a total estimated cost of well over $400 million (1983 values) for both states or $1.3 billion in adjusted terms (2007).
The emergency saw the largest number of volunteers called to duty from across Australia at the same time—an estimated 130,000 firefighters, defence force personnel, relief workers and support crews.

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Ash Wednesday Bushfires - Fun Facts,…
True. The dust storm reduced the visibility and the fires could not be seen. Two hundred thousand tons of dry soil were lifted from the ground and the dust cloud was ...
www.funtrivia.com/en/subtopics/Ash-Wednesday-Bushfires-111514.html
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Ash Wednesday bushfires - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Ash Wednesday Bushfires, known in South Australia as Ash Wednesday II, were a series of bushfires that occurred in south-eastern Australia on 16 ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ash_Wednesday_bushfires
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How Ash Wednesday changed our lives | The Advertiser
Feb 16, 2013 ... IT is 30 years since 28 people died in the Ash Wednesday Bushfires, the worst in South Australia's history. Are we any safer. Penelope Debelle ...
www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/how-ash-wednesday-changed-our-lives/story-e6frea83-1226579063110
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30th anniversary of Ash Wednesday bushfires | SBS News
Feb 16, 2013 ... It's 30 years since Ash Wednesday, when 75 people lost their lives and more than 3000 homes were destroyed in bushfires.
www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2013/02/16/30th-anniversary-ash-wednesday-bushfires
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Ash Wednesday (pdf 188k) - Country Fire Authority
The Ash Wednesday fires consisted of some of the most devastating bushfires Australia has ever experienced, sweeping through parts of Victoria and South ...
www.cfa.vic.gov.au/fm_files/attachments/kids_and_schools/fact-sheets/fs_ash-wednesday.pdf
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75 perish in the Ash Wednesday bushfires - 80 Days That Changed ...
Jan 19, 2012 ... The Ash Wednesday Bushfires on Feb 16 1983 were the deadliest on record until February 2009 when 173 people perished on Black ...
www.abc.net.au/archives/80days/stories/2012/01/19/3411671.htm
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On this day: Ash Wednesday bushfires - Australian Geographic
Feb 15, 2013 ... As a young psychiatrist, Sandy worked with communities impacted by the Ash Wednesday Bushfires after they swept through southern Victoria ...
www.australiangeographic.com.au/blogs/on-this-day/2013/02/on-this-day-ash-wednesday-bushfires/
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Historical Disasters - Ash Wednesday
Oct 13, 2011 ... About Ash Wednesday. South Australia and Victoria experienced a hot and dry summer in February 1983. Small fires broke out across the two ...
www.em.gov.au/library/Onlineresources/Historicaldisasters/Pages/HistoricalDisastersAshWednesday.aspx
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The Ash Wednesday bushfires in Victoria - Paul Valent
ABSTRACT: The Ash Wednesday Bushfires were one of the worst natural ... After years of severe drought, many bushfires erupted on this day. Nine areas in ...
www.paulvalent.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/disasters_consequences_02.pdf
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CFS :: 30th Anniversary of Ash Wednesday
Feb 16, 2013 ... The 30th Anniversary of the Ash Wednesday Bushfires that swept through parts of South Australia and Victoria is being commemorated on 16 ...
www.cfs.sa.gov.au/site/news_media/30th_anniversary_of_ash_wednesday.jsp
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Ash Wednesday Bushfires in science
Bushfire Study - Faculty of Health Sciences - University of Adelaide
The purpose of this study was to re-examine a cohort of 808 adults who were primary school children at the time of the 1983 Ash Wednesday Bushfires in South ...
Ash Wednesday bushfires - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For the 1980 bushfires in South Australia, see Ash Wednesday fires (1980). ... The Ash Wednesday Bushfires, known in South Australia as Ash Wednesday II, were a series of bushfires that occurred in south-eastern ..... University of Adelaide.
Black Saturday bushfires - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Black Saturday bushfires were a series of bushfires that ignited or were ...... A senior lecturer in fire ecology from the University of Melbourne estimated that ...
1983 - Bushfires in Victoria - Research Guides at State Library of ...
Jan 2, 2014 ... The Ash Wednesday Bushfires in Victoria, 16 February 1983. Study by the Centre for Disaster Studies, James Cook University of North ...
How Ash Wednesday changed our lives | The Advertiser
Feb 16, 2013 ... IT is 30 years since 28 people died in the Ash Wednesday Bushfires, the worst in South Australia's history. Are we any safer. Penelope Debelle ...
On this day: Ash Wednesday bushfires - Australian Geographic
Feb 15, 2013... says Professor Sandy McFarlane, at the University of Adelaide's Centre ... On Ash Wednesday, Peter Schmidt was a volunteer fire fighter in ...
Bushfires: are we doing enough to reduce the human impact? -- Sim ...
After the 1983 Ash Wednesday Bushfires, a full economic assessment was undertaken.13 Including such costs as .... Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1985.
1612... - Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre
Ash Wednesday Fires, February 1983. The severe drought over eastern Australia in 1982 led to tinder dry conditions throughout the grasslands and forests of ...
[PDF]The Ash Wednesday bushfires in Victoria - Paul Valent
ABSTRACT: The Ash Wednesday Bushfires were one of ... After years of severe drought, many bushfires erupted on ...... Columbus: Ohio State University. 1976.
Search Center : grants - Attorney-General's Department
Results 1 - 10 of 75 ... Summary: Comprises … reports of the Ash Wednesday Bushfires in South ... University of South Australia Graeme Nicholas … recovery.
Books on the term Ash Wednesday Bushfires
Natural Hazards
Natural Hazards
Edward Bryant, 2005
Issues relating to prescribed burning practices, and pitting conservationists against fire authorities in attempts to prevent another Ash Wednesday, must be resolved. The Ash Wednesday Bushfires of 1983 were the worst natural disaster in ...
International Perspectives on Natural Disasters: Occurrence, ...
International Perspectives on Natural Disasters: Occurrence, ...
Joseph P. Stoltman, John Lidstone, Lisa M. Dechano, 2007
While a certain level of preparedness and acceptance of disasters, such as drought and bushfires, are a part of cultural ... 7.2 THE SOUTH AUSTRALIAN BUSHFIRES OF 1983 The Ash Wednesday Bushfires, which affected the Adelaide Hills ...
Community Bushfire Safety
Community Bushfire Safety
John Handmer, Katharine Haynes, 2008
However, prior to the 1983 Ash Wednesday Bushfires in Victoria and South Australia, there were few formal investigations into the exact circumstances under which people died in bushfires, or the related issue of how houses are lost.
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Ash Wednesday Bushfires
Survivors mark 30th anniversary of Ash Wednesday - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Thirty years after the Ash Wednesday Bushfires, survivors recall the devastating firestorm and remember those who were lost.
www.abc.net.au/news/2013-02-16/ash-wednesday-30th-anniversary-marked/4522774
Services held to mark Ash Wednesday anniversary - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Services are being held this weekend to remember the 75 people who lost their lives on Ash Wednesday 30 years ago.
www.abc.net.au/news/2013-02-16/services-held-to-mark-ash-wednesday-anniversary/4523212
Buschfeuer in Victoria und South Australia 1983 – Wikipedia
de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buschfeuer_in_Victoria_und_South_Australia_1983
How Ash Wednesday changed our lives | The Advertiser
IT is 30 years since 28 people died in the Ash Wednesday Bushfires, the worst in South Australia's history. Are we any safer. Penelope Debelle reports.
www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/how-ash-wednesday-changed-our-lives/story-e6frea83-1226579063110
CFS to mark 30 years since Ash Wednesday | The Australian
SOUTH Australia's volunteer firefighters will remember all their colleagues killed in action at a memorial service on Saturday marking the 30th anniversary of the Ash Wednesday Bushfires.
www.theaustralian.com.au/news/latest-news/cfs-to-mark-30-years-since-ash-wednesday/story-fn3dxiwe-1226578854327
Ash Wednesday 30th Anniversary Memorial Service | Facebook
www.facebook.com/events/293794370723449/?ref=22
South Australian Memorial Service to mark 30th Anniversary of Ash Wednesday | Forest Fire News
www.forestfirenews.com/south-australian-memorial-service-to-mark-30th-anniversary-of-ash-wednesday/
30th Anniversary of the Ash Wednesday Fires - Country Fire Authority
CFA (Country Fire Authority)
news.cfa.vic.gov.au/blog/30th-Anniversary-of-the-Ash-Wednesday-Fires.html
Narre Warren Fire Brigade - Ash Wednesday Memorial
www.nwfb.org.au/viewpage.php?page_id=9
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