Top of page
Disaster

People with Disabilities Urge for More Government Support After Bush Fires

One firefighter rescue worker at wild fire blaze.

A bushfire survivor living with a disability who lost his home in a massive bushfire is backing calls for authorities to do more to help vulnerable people prepare for longer and more intense fire seasons, reports ABC.

Tom and Lynn Armington lost their house, cars and pets in a 2014 bushfire in the Perth Hills  which destroyed more than 50 homes.  On the morning of the fire Mr Armington, who is blind and in a wheelchair, picked up the telephone to an automated telephone alert system. “And I heard this kind of unearthly alarm sound [and then] Emergency! Emergency!” he recalled.

The couple only had a vague household bushfire plan, and in hindsight they were not at all prepared for what was to come. Mrs Armington knew she had to get her husband to safety as soon as possible. She decided to take him to a shopping centre a short drive away before returning to the house for their pets and some belongings. But traffic chaos ensued as people evacuated, and the ordinarily short journey became a 40 minute round trip. Shortly after she returned to the house it caught fire, as well as both of their cars, leaving her to run for her life through flames, burning her arms.

Mr Armington said he would like to see local authorities create a register of vulnerable people to ensure all at-risk people, especially those who lived alone, were prepared for an emergency. People with Disabilities WA executive director Samantha Jenkinson has also called for greater support for vulnerable people to prepare for bush fires.

 

You might also like

Tropical cyclone catarina hurricane clouds Tropical cyclone catarina hurricane clouds

WFP, Fiji govt partner to safeguard vulnerable communities from cyclones

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has signed a…

female teacher sitting at desk with a Down syndrome schoolboy female teacher sitting at desk with a Down syndrome schoolboy

NSW expands disability support classes in mainstream schools

An extra 243 support classes have been approved to open…

NDIS building NDIS building

Building strong ecosystem of disability supports

The Albanese Labor Government is focused on creating a better…

a photo of network members Melissa Hale (left) and Jessi Hooper (right) facilitating a Building Inclusive Sport Clubs workshop in a meeting room. Melissa is standing and speaking holding notes and a pen. Jessi is sitting, listening and smiling. Behind the two is a television screen with a presentation. a photo of network members Melissa Hale (left) and Jessi Hooper (right) facilitating a Building Inclusive Sport Clubs workshop in a meeting room. Melissa is standing and speaking holding notes and a pen. Jessi is sitting, listening and smiling. Behind the two is a television screen with a presentation.

New network aims to empower women with disabilities in sports leadership

Disability Sports Australia and Victoria University, Melbourne have launched the…