In Australia, bush fires are causing serious damage in a late summer heatwave.
GV Aerials of bushfire near Langwarren, houses & people fighting fire (2 shots)
GV AERIALS Bush fire & smoke
GV AERIAL Horse trapped in field surrounded by flames
GV Newsman running to paddock & cutting fencing to release horse & hors runs off.
GV AERIALS Helicopter herding horses away from fire
GV AERIALS from helicopter of burning trees & brush (3 shots)
SV & GV Firemen & volunteers beating out fire (2 shots)
GV AERIALS Charred landscape.
GV AERIAL Black smoke billowing from fire on industrial waste dump & helicopter surveying scene (2 shots)
GV & SVs Fire being put out by firemen
TRANSCRIPTS: BORMANN: "Pushed by a strong northerly wind the blaze swept right through vacant blocks that formed a patchwork with the new homes. Householders armed themselves with garden hoses, while other families relayed water buckets from swimming pools. But as the blaze moved south-east it wasn't so much houses that were at danger -- it was a dozen or more horse studs that were really in trouble.
The eye-witness news helicopter relayed the latest reports back to C.F.A. (Central Fire Authority) and police crews on the ground. But time was running out for one horse, forced into the corner of a blazing paddock. It was a case of our news crews getting to the panicked animal before the flames reached it. If it had taken just a half a second longer we would have done more than just singed our hair.
Air-borne again the next job was in the adjacent paddock to head about a dozen horses to safety.
By early afternoon firemen had headed off the blaze, but pockets of flames were still giving them trouble.
At about the same time, not twenty kilometres (12.5 miles) away, about a dozen C.F.A. crews were trying to control the fire near Packenham. It started near a dam at a farmhouse, burnt around the house and along a grassy drain. Firemen extinguished the blaze by early afternoon, but not before it burnt through two hundred hectares (494 acres) of land. But today's fires weren't confined to the country."
SPOCROFT: "At Tullamarine another blaze almost closed the airport freeway. The fire started in the industrial waste dump of Clindeway (phonetic) Proprietry Limited in the early hours of the morning. It was thought to have been made safe, and then suddenly flared again, sending thick black smoke billowing over the freeway. No houses were threatened but it still brought strong protests from residents of the area."
REPORTERS: TREVOR BORMANN/STEWART SPOCROFT
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: In Australia, bush fires are causing serious damage in a late summer heatwave. Melbourne was ringed by flames on Tuesday (18 March) as thirty fires burnt out four hundred hectares (thousand acres) of scrubland, forest and blazing land. Two hundred firemen were called in to battle the flames which destroyed many houses and threatened livestock. ATV 10's Trevor Bormann reports.