Some relief has finally come to Australia after three months of dry heat that resulted in the worst early fire season for the continent in modern memory. Thunderstorms brought much-needed rain across the region, particularly in New South Wales where 3,000 homes have been damaged or destroyed by fires. Many fires are still raging, but the rains have already reduced their number from 120 to 88.

Australians are stoked, particularly this little guy:

The rains will bring some relief to the region’s overworked firefighters, who have been battling the wildfires nonstop. While the fight is far from over, the rains will help to contain the fires that are still blazing and reduce the amount of smoke that is causing severe air quality issues in nearby cities.

The New South Wales Rural Fire Service has been praying for this rain all week after forecasts predicted the storms.

“This will be all of our Christmas, birthday, engagement, anniversary, wedding and graduation presents rolled into one,” they tweeted on Monday. “Fingers crossed.”

Happy birthgagemasversary, firefighters!

Not every part of the country received rain that needed it, and many parts didn’t get enough, while other areas got as much as three inches of rain in a few hours.

The bad news is that the sudden downpour has caused flooding and even some sinkholes to open up as the intensely dry ground has trouble soaking up the water. In areas that were already hit by fires, vegetation that would normally soak up the rain is now gone, resulting in a risk of flash floods.

The storms also disrupted power for over 10,000 homes in New South Wales and Victoria, but residents don’t seem to mind.

Congratulations, Australia!

Share this article
*First Published: January 16, 2020, 11:07 am