Firemen from across the US arrived in Sydney and Melbourne to fight the bushfires.
As Australia continues to battle raging bushfires, a team of firefighters from the US landed in the country Thursday to provide assistance. A video of the American firefighters getting thundering applause at the Sydney international airport is now going viral on social media.
Travelers at the airport are seen cheering and applauding for the firefighters in the video shared by the commissioner of the New South Wales (NSW) Rural Fire Service. Sharing the video, that has since been viewed over five million views on Twitter, commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons wrote, "Coming through, all gathered gave a spontaneous & lengthy round of applause, reflecting the gratitude & admiration we all have for their generosity."
US fire fighters arrived at Sydney Int Airport this week, on their way to assist with fire fighting in Victoria.
Coming through, all gathered gave a spontaneous & lengthy round of applause, reflecting the gratitude & admiration we all have for their generosity. #NSWRFS @NSWRFS pic.twitter.com/5epg5y4qxX
— Shane Fitzsimmons (@RFSCommissioner) January 9, 2020
According to the National Interagency Fire Center—the government agency that is coordinating the deployment of firefighters from the US—roughly 100 firefighters have been sent to Australia.
Apart from Sydney, a team of firefighters from the US also landed in Melbourne to help with battling fires in Victoria.
Thrilled to welcome an additional 48 American firefighters to #Melbourne this morning to assist with the ongoing bushfire crisis. They’ll deploy across country Victoria to help our Aussie mates at this challenging time
🇺🇸🇦🇺 #USwithAUS #AustraliaFires pic.twitter.com/Wv7SAdif6l
— US Embassy Canberra (@USAembassyinOZ) January 8, 2020
The move comes in response to a gesture in 2018, when firefighters from Australia and New Zealand went to California to help fight wildfires. The last time US firefighters worked in Australia was 2010.
In December, a team of firefighters from Canada had arrived in Australia to assist in fighting wildfires despite it meaning that they would miss Christmas with their families. They had also been welcomed with applause at the airport.
The firefighters from the US also received praise from people online.
My father was a firefighter. The job is so dangerous, & my mother, brother, & I worried each time he left our home that he would not return.
Thank you to these American firefighters arriving in Sydney to help with the #AustraliaFires.
Sending love & prayers to all affected. https://t.co/YBQ2saE7ht
— Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) January 9, 2020
It is phenomenal over here, the amount of support and donations the fire fighters are receiving from everyone as they go out to risk their lives for all of us. There are convoys of trucks leaving Sydney on the daily with donated supplies & drinks from the communities not effected
— Robbie (@rob_johnson_9) January 9, 2020
I'm not crying............ Nope.
— Uniballer (@AKatsonis) January 9, 2020
This is amazing! I’m so proud of my countrymen🇺🇸coming to join your countrymen🇦🇺to rid these fires together! We❤️you Australia & we’re so heartbroken for you. We ALL want to help. Thank you for the generous welcome for our guys. Let’s kick some fire-ass!👩🏼🚒🔥👨🏻🚒
— JetSetChristy (@JetSetChristy) January 9, 2020
These are the true heroes! Stay safe 🙏🙏
— Lyn DiGati-Clark (@chickfrom716) January 9, 2020
So wonderful to to see them joining all the international heroes, including their Canadian neighbours who are there trying to save this gorgeous country! Every effort is needed ❤️
— EyesOn (@wilmotcreeker) January 9, 2020
So proud of *all* the volunteers who are walking into dangerous ground to help our Australian friends. May your efforts be effective, and may you come home safely. 🇺🇸❤🇦🇺
— AllReihledUp (@ballgirl023) January 9, 2020
American firefighters landed in Sydney airport to help fight the bushfires her in Australia ❤️ words can’t describe how much appreciation and gratitude we have for them to come all this way and risk... https://t.co/iMIESEuGrt
— Megan 'CC' Keena (@Candy_canexox) January 10, 2020
Australia urged nearly 2.5 lakh people to evacuate their homes on Friday and prepared military backup as soaring temperatures and erratic winds fanned bushfires across the east coast.
Fire conditions are expected to become extreme later in the day in several places, accompanied by high winds, threatening to further fuel flames that have already left thousands homeless.
Since October, 27 people have been killed and thousands subjected to repeat evacuations as monster and unpredictable fires scorched more than 10.3 million hectares (25.5 million acres) of land, or an area the size of South Korea.