Posted October 16, 2018 03:18:25 The story of an Australian couple who survived the bushland fire in Australia in the 1970s is well known, but they may have had to fend for themselves after the devastating blaze tore through their small town of Coorparoo, on the NSW South Coast.
Key points:The story of the Coorperoo couple is well documented, but the Coogeroo couple were among the lucky ones who survivedThe couple’s story has been told before, but this is the first time a person has told their own story of surviving bushfiresIn an interview with the ABC’s Four Corners program, Coogaroo’s Mr Bruce said he was “a bit shocked” when he saw a photograph of the couple.
“The family photo is quite impressive,” he said.
“I was quite shocked.”‘
We’re lucky to be alive’The couple was neighbours of the community of Coogaroo, and lived in a small bungalow in Coorpoor.
“It was a quiet, quiet little community,” Mr Bruce explained.
“We’d drive up to the small bungo, and we’d eat dinner in the front garden.”
When it was time for us to leave, we’d get out and drive back in.
It was quiet, really peaceful.”‘
This was a big fire’After being forced to leave their bungalows in the early hours of October 11, the couple drove for hours in the bush to get back into the community.”
They were living on the street at the time,” Mr Wilson said.
The couple said the fire was so fierce that they had to use a ladder to get to their house.”
Once we got to the house, the fire wasn’t going to let up,” Mr Douglas said.’
We were living in a very rural area’The fire took out the two-storey bungalower, and destroyed the kitchen, kitchen cabinets, washing machine and clothes dryer.”
Everything was in pieces,” Mr Scott said.
Mr Wilson and Mr Douglas had to spend the next few weeks in hospital, and Mr Wilson was treated for smoke inhalation and a chest infection.”
He went straight to the hospital, where he was put on a ventilator,” Mr Langford said.”[He] didn’t really have much to drink.
He was in a state of shock, he was just trying to make sense of it all.”‘
They were not in any pain’Mr Wilson said his wife was in good spirits, and was able to get the help she needed.”
She was pretty lucky that she wasn’t in any danger, she was okay,” he added.”
In those days it was a bit of a shock.
“But I think they were lucky to survive.”‘
I was scared’The family told the ABC they did not consider themselves lucky to have survived.
“You don’t think of that sort of thing,” Mr Hughes said.”‘
Oh, well, they’re lucky’.”‘
We had a family to feed’Mr Langford and Mr Hughes described their survival as “a miracle”.
“They weren’t in a lot of pain, they were just doing their jobs, getting their kids to school,” Mr Angford said of the family.
“Our house was in the middle of the road, so we were able to do the best we could, but we had a home to feed, and that’s what we needed.”‘
It’s not easy’The Coogers had to evacuate from their small community of 2,500 people on the night of the fire, and they had no idea how far it would travel before they were able at last to leave.
“My wife had her eyes opened wide in shock,” Mr Lee said.
After leaving the small town, they returned to Coorpoloo, and for a few weeks they stayed in a shack.
“For a long time we couldn’t see the road and couldn’t get to work, but finally we did,” Mr Lloyd said.
Coogaroot has had several fires in recent years, but none have taken so long to spread.
“There was a fire in Coogoroo, it was devastating, it tore through everything,” Mr Fletcher said.
A small patch of grass was burned down, but most of the damage was done by a bushfire.
“What we had in Coo was a little patch of dirt,” Mr Kelly said.
When asked if he had any regrets about the ordeal, Mr Hughes admitted that the fire “had a little bit of an impact on the life of the people in Coos, I’m not going to say anything bad about it”.
Topics:fires,fires,cobra,fires-and-accidents,coorpoo-4870,cooaroo-4625,qld,australiaFirst posted October 16 , 2018 07:16:46Contact