UPDATED at 6:43 p.m. PST January 11, 2020.
The bushfires in Australia have claimed the life of a fifth firefighter. It occurred Saturday January 11 while a firefighter was working on a fire in the Omeo area of Victoria, Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp has confirmed.
Forest Fire Management Victoria Chief Fire Officer Chris Hardman said, “Bill Slade was working as a member of a task force at the Anglers Rest area and he was struck by a tree.”
“Family and fellow emergency personnel are being informed and will be supported,” he said. “The safety and wellbeing of our people is our highest priority. The matter will be investigated by Victoria Police who will prepare a report for the Coroner.”
Mr. Slade, 60, had worked for 40 years as a firefighter with Parks Victoria. He is survived by his wife Carol, daughter Steph and son Ethan.
Our sincere condolences go out to the family, friends, and co-workers.
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