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TAS Country : January 10th 2013
6 Tasmanian Country Friday, January 11, 2013 DESTROYED: Farmers now face the daunting task of replacing fencing Rallying the troops ROGER HANSON Hotline launched A FARMERS' hotline has been estab- lished for bushfire recovery assistance. The Tasmanian Farmers and Graz- iers Association (TFGA) is co- ordinating farm bushfire response and requests for help with a farmers' special hotline 1800 154 111. Meanwhile, the Director of Public Health and Chief Health Officer, Dr Roscoe Taylor, said people in or return- ing to bushfire zones should take some simple precautions when using water drawn from rainwater tanks. ''The presence of ash and debris in rainwater does not represent a health risk but it can affect colour, clarity and taste,'' Dr Taylor said. ''But there may be other contami- nants to deal with including from dead animals or trace chemical residues from burnt treated timber.'' TFGA chief executive Jan Davis said association staff and volunteers are attempting to match donations and offers of assistance. ''The support and overwhelming generosity of Tasmanians and other Australians to the plight of affected farmers has been amazing,'' she said. ''We are trying to contact affected farmers directly, but it is not always possible. They are encouraged to call us so we can work with them to assess their needs both today and into the coming weeks. Specific secure depot points have been organised across the state for materials to be left and then matched with farmers' needs.'' Ms Davis said priority requirements include fodder, fencing materials, gen- erators, portable yards, livestock crates for transport and agistment for stock. ''Farmers will also need volunteers, now and in the coming weeks, to help with fencing, loading, clearing up and stock work. ''Transport is important too for moving fodder and supplies. Many of the transport companies that work in our sector have been extraordinarily generous and that is appreciated. But we'll need to support them and others with funds for fuel.'' Ms Davis said donations of money specifically for farmers would be es- pecially helpful. Tax-deductible donations for farm specific activities can be made to a special TFGA account (BSB: 037-608, account number 52-7272 or by credit card or cheque.) Information on the TFGA website includes useful contacts, FAQs, fact sheets and other relevant information. This includes links to the care of animals affected by bushfires. Visit www.tfga.com.au, and click on the link bushfire at the bottom of the front page. The TFGA hotline number is 1800 154 111. For advice on rainwater tank disin- fection and maintenance go to http: //www.dhhs.tas.gov. au/peh/water. Burn-off saves Forcett farm From Page 4 put down livestock where necessary. Contact Rosemary Meissner on 6233 6875. Another excellent website is www.dpi.vic.gov.au Tasmanian Quality Meats at Cressy 6397 6593, and Swift at Longford 6397 0111, are prepared to take sheep for emergency slaughter. However, they must be ''fit to load''. Chipping in to help is the TFGA Disaster Relief Fund, which directly supports farmers, and Rural Alive and Well Tasmania which is providing counselling and support services. Rural Financial Counselling Service Tasmania is offering free, independent assistance to primary producers and small rural business people. Agribusin- ess bank Rabobank Australia and other banks have made a range of measures available to support far- mers. Deputy Premier Bryan Green announced details of the State Government's initial assistance available to those affected by the bushfires. He said a range of im- mediate and medium-term assist- ance measures would be offered. Grants available include immedi- ate cash assistance ($200 per adult, $100 per child, maximum of $750 per family); temporary living grants of up to $8875 (over a maximum period of six months) to assist with living expenses; essential household goods grants of up to $5600 per household (plus $500 per additional household member up to a maximum of $8875) for costs not covered by insurance to assist with the replacement of essential household items; and repair/replace- ment grants of up to $8875 to assist with the reestablishment of the principal place of residence. More information about the grants is available at www.dpac.tas.gov.au/bu- shfires. To register interest, Tasman- ians can call 1800 808 340 from 9am. Donations to Australian Red Cross Tasmanian Bushfires Appeal have now topped $1.6 million and includes $75,000 from the Tasmanian Country, the Mercury andSunday Tasmanian. Do- nations can be made at www.redcros- s.org.au or phone 1800 811 700 to make a credit card donation. They can also be made at RACT branches. News FARMERS' HOTLINE 1800 154 111
January 3rd 2013
January 17th 2013