Australia's worst natural disasters

The bushfire crisis in Victoria isAustralia's worst-ever bushfire disaster. It's also Australia'sworst natural disaster in 110 years. Here's a list of othernatural disasters.

The bushfires in Victoria have so far claimed 131 lives, making it Australia's worst-ever bushfire disaster. It's also Australia's worst-ever natural disaster in 110 years. Here's a list of other natural disasters.

CYCLONE MAHINA, 1899: struck Cape York in the country's far north, causing the greatest death toll of any natural disaster in Australia's recorded history. More than 400 people died, including the crews of about 100 pearling fleet vessels, and an estimated 100 local Aborigines.

UNNAMED CYCLONE, 1918: the far north was battered by an unnamed cyclone centred on Innisfail that caused immeasurable damage and killed about 90 people. Records show that 37 people were killed in Innisfail itself and a further 40-60 people, particularly from the Aboriginal community, killed in the surrounding area.

GUNDAGAI FLOODS, 1852: killed 89 of the southern rural town's 250 inhabitants. More people would have died were it not for the heroism of local Aborigine Yarri and his friend Jackie who saved more than 40 people using a bark canoe.

ASH WEDNESDAY BUSHFIRES, 1983: Fires erupted across Victoria and South Australia states, killing 75 people, including 12 volunteer firefighters. More than 2,000 houses were destroyed in Victoria and several hundred more in South Australia.

UNNAMED CYCLONE, 1934: This tropical cyclone crossed the coast near Cape Tribulation. The Pearling fleet just off the coast was devastated with many luggers and 75 lives lost.

BLACK FRIDAY BUSHFIRES, 1939: Fires broke out in Victoria state, burning almost 2 million hectares (20,000 square km) and killing 71 people. Whole townships were destroyed, prompting a landmark inquiry that led to measures being taken to protect life and property in the event of future bushfires.

CYCLONE TRACY, 1974: struck the northern city of Darwin on Christmas Eve, flattening the city and killing 64 people and injuring many thousands. More than half of Darwin's population of 43,000 was left homeless.

TASMANIA BUSHFIRES, 1967: fire ripped through 264,000 hectares of forest on the southern island of Tasmania in just five hours, killing 62 people and destroying 1,400 homes.

Source SBS Radio

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