December 2019. Since then the fires have spread even further and the death toll has risen markedly. ---- For the last six weeks, the eastern States of Australia have been suffering an unprecedented wave of bushfires. There have also been a number of bushfires in Western Australia. One of the driest winters on record has been followed by a warm and dry spring. This has led to huge areas of the continent being tinder dry and ready to catch fire far earlier than for a normal fire season. What we are seeing is unprecedented in its breadth, intensity, and timing.