Bligh sees destruction up close
PREMIER Anna Bligh made a flying visit to Rockhampton yesterday for a first-hand look at the fire-ravaged city outskirts.
Ms Bligh inspected the damage inflicted by bushfires in the past week.
She met with Rockhampton residents whose homes were just metres from the fire front as well as firefighters from New South Wales who provided much-needed backup for the region's weary officers.
It must have seemed worlds apart from her most recent trip - a trade mission to Russia last week.
It was an early start for the Premier who left Brisbane at 5am to fly to Rockhampton before returning later in the morning.
The visit came just as police advised that the emergency declaration at Mount Archer had been revoked.
Ms Bligh paid tribute to the 200 firefighters and support staff who successfully defended the city.
“When you see how close these fires have come to homes, you understand how well these firefighters have protected people and their property,” she said.
She said more than 3800 fires had sprung up across the state over the past four weeks, especially in Central Queensland where fires have burnt for 25 days straight.
“It is testing all of our resources; it is putting our people power to the test and taking our equipment to the absolute limit,” she said.
Ms Bligh expressed anger at news a Rockhampton man had been charged with breaching fire bans.
“Fire bans are put in place for a reason. This is nothing short of gross stupidity,” she said.
She hoped those responsible for starting a string of fires across the region would be caught.
Read more ...Rockhampton bushfire
Bligh pays tribute to firefighters
100 homes saved, fire contained'If the fire comes we'll make a dash'
High alert for Mt Archer blaze
Get ready for the worst
Pam's angels wear yellow suits
23 crews fight for town
Firies battle 49 fires in 24 hours
Firefighters protect homes