The state of Victoria in southern Australia has recently been hit with hundreds of bush fires during a record-breaking heatwave - temperatures well above 38°C (100°F). Unfortunately, these fires have proved to be the deadliest in Australian history, with at least 166 deaths reported so far. The fires mostly appear to have been started by lightning - however a few appear to have been arson, and are under investigation - entire towns being declared crime scenes. Twenty-four fires are still burning, and authorities warn that the death toll will likely rise.
Living in the dry Southern California, where brushfire is an ever-present danger, I truly sympathize with the victims of this deadly fire. I sincerely hope none of you are affected.