Svitzer Australia mobilised tugs to assist people trapped by firestorms raging through southeast Australia, the worst witnessed in a generation
Tugs have provided shelter for people evacuated from their homes in communities on the south coast of New South Wales and in eastern Victoria during Australia’s firestorm crisis.
Two Svitzer Australia tugs provided shelter for 60 local residents, aged between six months and 90 years old in Eden in New South Wales.
Residents stayed on tugs Cooma and Wistari as firefighters tackled blazers surrounding the community of Eden.
Svitzer pilot boat Mersey was also in action in the area as it attended two emergency callouts on 5 January.
Fire continues to ravage the area around Eden and other areas of New South Wales where Svitzer Australia is assisting the Rural Fire Service to tackle blazes.
In Victoria, Svitzer Australia is working with the Royal Australian Navy to help evacuees from Mallacoota reach safety by providing tug support.
This reduces the risk to communities trapped by the huge fires blazing through the states’ forests that is now a national crisis in Australia.
Huge fires in Victoria and New South Wales have endangered life, destroyed communities, infrastructure and natural habitats and created smoke and pollution hazes across the region.
It is feared that two fires will combine in these states to create a larger mega-blaze in days to come as hot and windy weather returns.
New South Wales state premier Gladys Berejiklian said emergency response should focus on people, “making sure people who have been displaced have somewhere safe”. This is where Svitzer Australia is assisting.
In ports around Australia trade and ship manoeuvring continues. Over the past two weeks, Svitzer Australia’s tugs Beltana and Clontarf assisted Maersk container ship Cezanne into Patrick Terminals in the Port of Brisbane.
Tug QLD manoeuvred P&O Cruises’ Ocean Dream cruise liner into Brisbane and tug Burra towed container ship YM Eternity through the heads of Port Phillip Bay, in Melbourne.