A member of the Victorian State Emergency Service has stayed behind to protect his home in fire ravaged East Gippsland.
Shane Peach wouldn’t describe himself as a hero, but the volunteer is being praised for his bravery and dedication to the community of Omeo after saying goodbye to his family who were evacuated.
“It was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do personally to stand there and watch my four stepchildren get flown out while me and my partner watch,” Mr Peach told 9News.
“I chose to stay because I’m proud of my community and the fire plan is to stay and protect.”
Mr Peach said he was proud of his volunteering work and he had a great support network from his community and family for the work he does.
“A lot of the time there has been six of us at the most and at one stage it was basically just me,” Mr Peach said.
There are concerns the East Gippsland and Alpine fires could merge tomorrow, creating a devastating mega blaze.
The fire spread predictions include almost all of East Gippsland as far west to Myrtleford south of Albury-Wodonga.
The Victorian government has declared a state of emergency for at-risk areas including Omeo, Towong, Mount Hotham, Bright and Orbost.
Temperatures in Victoria’s east are predicted to reach into the high 30s tomorrow.