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Listed under:  Health  >  Safety  >  Environmental hazards
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Virtually avoiding disaster

Sharing experiences, photographs and opinions via social media has taken the world by storm. In this clip from 2013, we see social media networks being embraced by a new set of users who believe that it can save lives during natural disasters. But should we be concerned about their potential for misuse?

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Fighting fire with fire: the debate

How do we best protect communities from the threat of bushfire? Prescribed burning is the preferred method in many parts of Australia, but it remains controversial. This clip investigates the science behind prescribed burning. Does it save property and lives, and can it destroy ecosystems?

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Summer bushfire fears

Unseasonably warm weather leading up to the start of the 2013 fire season was an ominous sign. This clip from September that year investigates how technology is used to better predict the likelihood of bushfire, as well as helping firefighters bring blazes under control.

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Life on our ever-changing creek

Imagine if you lived near a creek and it began to rain heavily. What might be the possible consequences of rising water levels?  How might you go about preparing to deal with it? How did the family in this video deal with a bridge getting destroyed?

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Firefighter battles grassfire, Queensland, 2007

This is a colour photograph, taken at night, of a firefighter using a high-pressure hose to spray water onto a grassfire at Main Beach on Queensland's Gold Coast on 11 February 2007. On the back of his jacket are the words 'QUEENSLAND FIRE AND RESCUE'. The firefighter, the hose and the spray are all in silhouette against ...

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Letter to Leading Aircraftman Howard Kellehear from Nell, 5 Jan 1942

This is a four-page letter, handwritten on lined paper with four emblems printed along the top edge in red and blue: ACF, RSL, THE SALVATION ARMY and YMCA. It measures 24.7 cm long x 19.6 cm wide.

Interactive Resource

Sentinel bushfire hotspots - SpatialGenie map layer

This is a satellite image of Australia showing the location of bushfires within the past 24 hours. The location of each bushfire is identified by a symbol that is colour coded according to when the bushfire was last detected. Students use the spatial visualisation tool, SpatialGenie, to explore the satellite image as spatial ...

Interactive Resource

Landslides: Australia - SpatialGenie map layer

This is a map showing the location of landslides in Australia between 1842 and 2001. Students use the spatial visualisation tool, SpatialGenie, to explore the map as spatial data. They can investigate this map alone or add other map layers. Students use shape tools to measure area and distance, and they can also search ...

Teacher resource

Disaster preparedness

This is a compilation of four teaching sequences about disasters and disaster preparation. It includes sections on types of disasters; their effects on people and the environment; disaster preparation; earthquake preparedness in Indonesia; emergency response; disaster recovery and the causes and consequences of disasters. ...

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Volcanic eruptions at Mount Ruapehu

Imagine a volcano erupting kilometres away. You are afraid, worried for the safety of yourself and others. Paul Willis presents the work of New Zealand volcanologists conducting research at Mount Ruapehu, a volcano with a history of devastating lahar (water, sediment and rocks) flows. Learn more about lahar flows and the ...

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Climate and bushfires in Australia

What can science tell us about the major cause of bushfires in Australia's past? How can it help us predict future bushfires? Two scientists discuss evidence related to bushfire regimes (bushfire patterns, types and intensity). Please note that this clip contains recent images of homes destroyed by fire that may disturb ...

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Australian bushfires, past and present

How did firefighters fight bushfires in the past? Watch this short black-and-white clip showing footage of firefighters in action against the 1939 Black Friday bushfires. Find out about the challenge posed by the fires of today.

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New Zealand's earthquakes

Damaged buildings, flooded roads, and crashed cars! No, it's not a bad dream; it's actually the aftermath of an earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 2011. Find out about what causes earthquakes, the damage they cause, and why Christchurch was rocked by two quakes within six months. This clip includes footage of earthquake ...

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Preparing for a bushfire

How should you prepare for a bushfire? Watch this clip to discover how two different families prepared for the 2006 Victorian bushfires that hit their town. Find out how the children participated in the fire plan and helped keep their family and house safe.

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Tsunamis

Discover what powerful force triggers a tsunami. In this clip you will see the damage caused by tsunami, and find out why it occurred. Learn about what is happening on the ocean floor and the connection between tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanoes and tectonic plates. See how a warning centre is working to keep people safe ...

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Ecological effects of bushfires

Did you know that Australia is the most flammable continent on Earth? Watch this clip to discover how bushfires impact natural ecosystems, and how the increasing global threat of bushfires may affect Australia. Australian scientists explain the ecological consequences of fire and a US expert describes his concerns for the future.

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Megafires

Are we approaching the 'age of megafires'? It might sound like something out of a sci-fi movie, but some scientists believe there is cause for concern. Watch this clip to find out how bushfires as we know them are changing. Discover why.

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Bushfire disaster, Victoria 2009

Investigate Victoria's devastating bushfires of 2009 and find out why they have been called Australia's worst ever natural disaster. In this clip you will see the ferocious fires that ripped through parts of Victoria, destroying bushland, farms, houses, schools and cars. Find out what made these fires so devastating.

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Fire management strategies

What role do fire-behaviour specialists and ecologists have in fire management? Watch this clip to find out about issues relating to fire management in Australia, in particular prescribed burning.

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Volcanoes and people

Imagine living in the shadow of a volcano? Well, millions of people do in Naples, Italy, where a massive volcano called Vesuvius exists. This clip explores the dangers posed by volcanoes and investigates some recent and ancient eruptions. Find out some misconceptions about volcanoes and discover how science is helping prevent ...