I think I speak for everyone when I say a huge thank you and offer great appreciation to the many firefighters and volunteers, the Rural Fire Service, and other fire agencies from outside of our region, who have come to help fight the fires at Crestwood and Lake Cathie.
Your commitment and selflessness is truly inspiring and you've done an exceptional job in keeping everyone in our community safe without loss of any homes.
These fires have had a far-reaching and devastating impact on our community, natural environment and local wildlife, and although the situation is no longer an emergency status, it's still extremely important for everyone to stay aware, safe and cautious.
And it is incredibly important that we continue to follow instructions from the Rural Fire Service on their website, app and social media, as the most trustworthy source of information in these times.
Make sure you have a bushfire plan ready, remain watchful, and keep a look out for your family, friends and neighbours.
On Saturday, I visited the Koala Hospital and was shown first-hand the effects of these fires on a little koala who had his ears burnt. He had thankfully been brought in by a resident. I am assured he will make a full recovery.
Let us all hope that there will be many more koalas found alive and able to be restored to good health in the coming days.
I would also like to thank all our wonderful volunteers, as well as our council team, who are going out to the affected areas to look for injured wildlife.
I strongly encourage everyone to contact FAWNA (6581 4141) or the Koala Hospital (6584 1522) if you find any injured wildlife.
It is our priority to continue working with the RFS and all the agencies involved, to ensure our community is safe. We must all support our firefighters and volunteers in any way possible.
For more information and emergency advice go to pmhc.nsw.gov.au/emergency-advice.
Information on how to stay informed and to download the NSW Rural Fire Service app or to volunteer is at rfs.nsw.gov.au/news-and-media/stay-up-to-date.