Update - Fire response on Tasman Peninsula
Friday, 4 January 2013 - 10:02pm
A triage team has been flown into Dunalley this evening to assess the damage caused by the fire.
The team of Tasmania Police officers, Tasmania Ambulance and Tasmania Fire Service officers is on the ground, checking for any deaths or injuries as a result of the fire.
There have been no confirmed reports of death or injuries at this stage, however the team will be investigating a report that a fire crew were unable to reach a man who was defending his home when the fire passed over.
An assessment from the air indicates a significant loss of property; up to 65 buildings in Dunalley and 15 properties in nearby Boomer Bay and a number of properties destroyed at Connelly’s Marsh, west of Dunalley.
Several groups of people sheltered safely in the area; about 50 people are safe in the Boomer Bay jetty area another group of people are safe at the Dunalley Hotel. A Police vessel is in the area, checking the shoreline for people who were reported to be sheltering in the water; no one has been located at this stage.
A helicopter has been working to evacuate anyone suffering heat distress or other health issues at the request of Tasmania Ambulance Service. Another helicopter has deployed response personnel and equipment into the area.
At present the police vessels are ferrying fuel, generators, medical supplies and other items to Dunalley, and the refuge centres at Nubeena. Police are also working with Telstra to transport generators and other equipment to commence restoration of communication where possible.
Tasmania Police is working with the Tasmania Fire Service to identify options to allow people to safely leave the Tasman Peninsula, or return to their homes. Efforts are being to reopen the Arthur Highway, however this will only occur when it is deemed to be safe.
An information hotline has been established; 1800 567 567.
Please monitor the TFS website www.fire.tas.gov.au for information on the fire situation.