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Dunalley devastated

Posted by: Staff writers | 7 January, 2013 - 10:46 AM
Dunalley

4BC Summer Mornings: Bill Kidd, licensee of the Dunalley Hotel joins Ian Maurice following the worst bushfires Dunalley has ever seen on Friday. Kidd reports live from the devastated township of 300.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard will tour bushfire-devastated Tasmania on Monday, as the fires that have destroyed 100 properties since Friday continue.

No deaths have been recorded so far.

Police have searched 245 properties in Dunalley and to the north of the town, including 90 badly damaged or destroyed buildings.

About 65 police and other searchers will continue the work on Monday south of Dunalley towards the more densely forested Murdunna and Sommers Bay area.

About 14 buildings have been destroyed at Sommers Bay.

Police believe most of the 100 people feared missing have been accounted for, and have urged people in affected areas to register with the National Registration and Inquiry Service on 1800 727 077 or via www.redcross.org.au.

The large bushfire between Forcett and the Tasman Peninsular and at Lake Repulse continues to burn out of control.

The weather bureau expected conditions on Monday to be fairly similar to those on Sunday.

The Tasmanian Fire Service says the fire danger rating in these areas area is high and the fire is difficult to control.

The TFS says people should leave now if it is safe, but should not return to their homes if they have already located to a safer area.

Phil Douglas from the TFS says a heavy dew overnight had prevented backburning, but firefighters would take advantage of mild conditions early on Monday morning to strengthen containment lines.

Authorities are trying to get through Arthur Highway, which has been cut off since Friday, stranding thousands on the Tasman Peninsula.

"It's a pretty hard thing to put a timeline on, but it's a high priority," Mr Douglas told ABC Radio.

Around 400 more evacuees were due to be ferried by boat from the Tasman Peninsula on Sunday night, while police were investigating whether it was safe to escort cars out on the closed Arthur Highway.

Acting Premier Bryan Green said the resilience of the Tasmanian people would ensure the state would rebuild once the bushfires had been extinguished.

Authorities will work with affected communities to ensure they are rebuilt as quickly as possible.

"The resilience of the Tasmanian people, particularly those people in the peninsular area means that we will rebuild," Mr Green said on Monday.

"This is a fantastic part of Tasmania, a fantastic part of the world and it has an enormous amount to offer."

Frustration was creeping in for those who had been directly affected by the fires.

"It's a very unnerving feeling obviously, if you're a Hobart resident today," the acting premier said.

"Those people in the peninsular in particular who have been stranded in that area are finding it difficult to cope."

The federal government has sent a mobile services centre to Tasmania to deliver emergency funding to bushfire victims.

Emergency Services Minister Nicola Roxon said those affected could apply for emergency funding of up to $1000 per adult, and $400 per child.

Fuel supplies to the Tasman Peninsula are being organised for Monday, while a controlled convoy of essential emergency services delivered equipment and resources to the area on Sunday night.

There is no indication at this stage that any of the fires in Tasmania were started intentionally.

Meanwhile, bushfires are burning in Victoria, NSW and the ACT, while South Australia is braced for high temperatures over the next couple of days.

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