The Australian authorities confirmed, Wednesday morning, the death of a third person in the devastating forest fires that struck the southeastern coast this week, and a fourth loss, possibly as well as the navy forces rushed to provide supplies and assistance in the evacuation operations, and has so far confirmed the death of 12 people in fire-related accidents across the country since it flared up a few months ago, including three volunteer firefighters, after three years of drought.
The columns of fire, which were fueled by high temperatures, hit entire towns on Monday and Tuesday, prompting thousands of people to seek refuge on the beaches, and many stood in shallow waters to escape the flames.
Fires destroyed more than ten million acres, and new fires erupt almost daily due to hot and stormy weather.
The relative decrease in temperatures today allowed the country the opportunity to limit the losses, although there are still more than 100 fires in New South Wales alone and thousands of firefighters continue to combat with forest fires.
The body of a man was found in a burning car, on Wednesday, on the southern coast of the state, after emergency workers began combing the worst affected areas. Police said the death toll would rise.
“With all sorrow, today we announce that the police have confirmed three more deaths as a result of fires on the southern coast,” Gary Worboys, deputy commissioner of the state police, told reporters in Sydney.
State police said the missing person was a 72-year-old man, whom the authorities were unable to reach.
Fires spread in several states and spread hundreds of kilometers in some areas.
It is noteworthy that meteorological officials in Australia have recently warned of more forest fires already burning in the country due to the formation of a severe heat wave expected to hit the country soon.