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Seven Afternoon News -

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(generated from captions) Her feet will improve
when she takes the weight off them and goes back to doing
what comes naturally - flying for weeks
without ever touching land. She's the feistiest albatross
we've ever known.

Hello. Good morning.

The whole time
she's been in hospital, her mate's been out there somewhere,
waiting for her. They do mate for life
and she's breeding age. I can tell by her plumage. Because they only breed
every couple of years, the numbers drop really considerably when one of the pair
doesn't come back. And he may wait two seasons
for her to return, so it's so important to get her
back out into the wild.


This is perfect weather for her. Are you ready, madam? You're a good girl.

She's rested up.
She should be absolutely fine.

This program is captioned live. In this bulletin -

State of alert as bushfires erupt
across New South Wales on a day of scorching temperatures. Fires flare in Victoria -
the CFA kept busy near Dartmoor. Strong southerlies renew the danger
from fires burning in Tasmania.

And we speak to the family
of a volunteer firefighter caught out by the flames. VOICEOVER:
This is Seven News afternoon edition with Robert Ovadia.

Good afternoon. Extreme bushfire conditions
have kept firefighters on edge in three states today - New South Wales, Victoria
and Tasmania. The mercury soared above 40 degrees
across much of New South Wales. 130 fires are burning
across the state and many are out of control.

As temperatures soared
to 40 degrees, grassfires erupted across
New South Wales. Across the state, 600 firefighters are battling
more than 100 outbreaks. One of the worst
is the Carlaminda fire, burning across farmland near Cooma
in southern New South Wales. As homes came under threat, residents were told
it was too late to leave. It's too late to make decisions when
the fire's on your back doorstep and they'll be there quickly
under these horrendous conditions. Emergency warnings were also issued
for the towns of Brogo and Tarcutta where property
was also in the firing line. There were fears at one stage for Australia's only
nuclear reactor facility at Lucas Heights in Sydney's south. Crews quickly contained
the electrical fire after smoke filled the building. And just what firefighters
didn't need - a truck exploded in flames on the M4
at Auburn in Sydney's west. It sparked a small fire in bushes
alongside the motorway. And there's still hours to go before any reprieve
from the heatwave conditions. The front that's moving through
New South Wales is not expected to pass through
some of our worst areas Until then, health authorities
are warning people to drink plenty of water
and stay cool. Thousands did just that
at Sydney beaches. Once you get out of the water, you get really hot straightaway
so you just go back in. Local pools were also popular. It's really hot out there, I know. That's why we thought
we'd come to the pools. But not everyone
was afforded the luxury... Get into it.

I'd rather be at home,
to be honest with you, or in the pool. But it's not just people
feeling the heat. Animals cooled off under the hose
at Taronga Zoo while zebras and lions kept
their tongues chilled on iceblocks.

A total fire ban in place
across New South Wales has now been extended
to include tomorrow. We'll cross now to
the Rural Fire Service Headquarters and Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons. Thanks for your time, Commissioner. What's the latest on
that fire burning near Cooma? That fired his

That fired his still burning and controlled. We have issued earnings -- warnings. The immediate threat to properties has eased but we have got the warning that to let people know it is in the area. That will be a big challenge in the days ahead as it is burning into some very difficult access to -- difficult to access country. 40 fires remained not contain.Another fire also concerning is one at Tarcutta, near Wagga Wagga.Do we have warnings in place without fire. We have firefighters on the ground. We have asked people to shelter in the areas around Tarcutta. We have strike teams from Victoria coming in to assist us. The warnings, as I say, remain.Sydney has not been spared from the bushfires today. What can you tell us from the blaze in the western suburbs?That fire is now contained. That is highly suspicious and I understand police have a number of individuals helping them with inquiries at the moment in relation to the suspicious circumstances around that choir -- fire?A sad anger you?Yes. We will take immediate action. I cannot praise police enough for the prompt, decisive intervention in identifying and seeking to interview individuals and assist them with appropriate behaviour today.The consequences of that could be a loss times. Have you heard of any across the state today?We're fortunate - we have no reports of homes damaged or destroyed. We have reports of buildings damaged or destroyed but they appear to be agricultural buildings such as storage sheds and hay shed and the like. We have not saying any homes damaged or destroyed at this stage. Commissioner, we know you are a very busy man. Thank you for your time.

The wife of a firefighter
injured in a blaze yesterday has told how she feared
for her husband's life. Rick Hinds was fighting his first
fire since becoming a volunteer when the wind changed
and the flames overran him. Reporter Alex Hart spoke
to his family. Rob, it's been a heart-wrenching
24 hours for the Hinds family who live near Gunning
just outside Canberra. Krystaal Hinds is
the local RFS deputy captain, and was at home listening
to the fire radio yesterday when news came through that there'd
been a casualty at the bushfire not far from her home. She said she knew straightaway
it was her husband, Rick, who was fighting his first blaze
since becoming a volunteer. He saw the smoke, and he rang
the captain and he went out and they got over-run and there's nothing
anyone can do about it. It's nobody's fault. Rick's father-in-law,
Peter Robinson, was fighting the fire alongside him, and applied first aid until
he could be driven to Goulburn, then airlifted to Sydney
for treatment. It just happened, just instantly.
There was no pre-warning. There wasn't even a big gust
of wind, it just changed. The 30-year-old father of three
suffered severe burns to his hands, face and throat but is in a stable condition,
and is improving. Huge relief. It's your worst fear when,
you know, he's always worried about me
going out. This time it's him. We'll have more of that exclusive
interview with Rick's wife in our evening bulletins at 6:00.

Further south, firefighters have
been on high alert across Victoria as a large bushfire
continues to burn out of control. Reporter Brendan Roberts
is following the story. Brendan, what's the latest
on the Dartmoor fire in the state's west?

Most of the 200 residents here in the township of Dartmoor evacuated their homes in recent days for fear this fire, which has been burning since Friday, were directly impact their homes. There were also fears that a wind change could push this heart -- fire, which has already burnt through about 30,000 hectares, toward the nearby township of Drik Drik. They what the bristly to establish containment line around the fire front. -- they worked feverishly. The winds change has not eventually took. Is there any relief in sight from the weather? Thankfully in the last couple of hours, as you can see around me, Mother Nature has stepped in, with steady rain falling in the region. It is helping the water bombing aircrafts from above it. This weather change has helped ease concerns that any properties will be lost at tonight were in the near future. This fire is still listed as out of control and is still expected to burn for some days yet.

In Tasmania,
there is renewed concern as fresh winds whip up the fire that devastated communities
on the Tasman Peninsula. Live now to Amanda Abate
at Primrose Sands. Good afternoon, Amanda. What's the latest
on the Forcett fire? The

The emergency has heightened here this afternoon. Residents in several towns are evacuating or heading to safer ground. Another emergency warning was in place in the state's north but that has since been downgraded. Temperatures have dropped it was raining a short time ago. But a South -- strong south-easterly change is proving difficult.

To date, we've searched over 500
residences and we'd like to conclude those
searches over the next few days, and we've got 20 police officers
to join our joint assessment and search teams and we're also bringing in
eight other specialists to help us with the missing persons
registration process. His there any of

His there any of date on people who are still listed as missing? Defend troops have been searching through the ruins of homes today. So far, 110 homes are up either destroyed or badly damaged. Of 100 people are still unaccounted for. And early today, some convoys made in and out of the Tasman peninsula? Police have been able to escort about 750 residents out in the past 24 hours but there are still about 1,500 residents stranded. They want to open the Arthur highway - that is a priority. At this stage, the Bush - - bushfire is still out of control there.

To other news now, and a man has handed himself
into police after allegedly running down an
officer, at Ipswich near Brisbane. The man is accused of ramming
the detective senior constable, who was trying to pull over his car
to investigate another matter. The driver then allegedly sped off. The officer was taken to hospital where he was treated for cuts
and bruises. Police are on the hunt
for a suspected gunman on the run
in Melbourne's eastern suburbs after an armed robbery this morning. It is believed two men held up
a hotel in Croydon around 10am. Police arrived as they were leaving. A car chase followed and it's alleged a man pointed a gun
at officers, during the pursuit. When offenders stopped the car,
a 20-year-old was arrested but the other man escaped on foot. He's being described
as extremely dangerous. The area is blocked to traffic and
residents are urged to stay indoors.

off the coast of Western Australia in a search for human remains after a man's head
washed up on a beach. An 11-year-old girl and her mother
found the head stuffed in a plastic bag. Police are trying
to identify the victim through DNA and dental records. We believe that he may have been
aged between 30 and 50 years, the male had no piercing
in his ears. I can say that he was missing
his front upper teeth. Police say it's possible the head
was thrown overboard off a boat. An exclusion zone around
Porpoise Bay remains in place.

Next in Seven's 4:30 News - tension in India as men accused of gang rape
and murder appear in court.

And Hillary Clinton returns to work
after her health scare.

Tanning is skin cells in trauma trying to protect themselves
from cancer. But just one millimetre deep, a melanoma can get into
your bloodstream and spread.

in India are due to face court again
on Thursday. Chaotic scenes forced yesterday's hearing
to be held behind closed doors, as protesters continue to condemn
sexual violence against women.

The wheels of justice turn
notoriously slowly in India... (HORN BEEPS) ..but for the gang accused of the
rape and murder of a young woman, the authorities are trying
to speed them up. Five members of the gang
were brought to court. One of them was filmed
as he left the cells. They were presented with the charges
against them in what was, for security reasons,
a closed hearing. Why, when the matter was fixed
for 12 o'clock hearing, why not the accused person should
have been presented?! Outside, concern that the
state's desire for speedy justice might be at the expense
of a fair trial. The suspects
were taken back to prison after a hearing which lasted
45 minutes. The court has already been told
that traces of the victim's blood had been found on their clothes
and inside the unlicensed bus where the attack took place. In this slum which the gang's
ringleader called home, his house is empty and padlocked. In the street a neighbour told me that the gang
had done the work of demons.

"What should be done to them? "They should go on the fire",
she said. In this case, there are now
police officers at every turn, but four of their colleagues
have been suspended for their handling
of another investigation. The body of a 21-year-old
alleged gang-rape victim was found in the Delhi suburbs
this weekend. Her family say
when they reported her missing the police didn't respond. US Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton is back at work after a health scare sidelined her
for a month. She suffered a fall which
caused a blood clot in her head. Staff have presented the 65-year-old
with a football helmet and jersey to remind her that politics,
in Washington, is a contact sport.

Next in Seven's 4:30 News -
the latest finance. A tourist's close encounter
with a rhino in South Africa.

And in sport - Lleyton Hewitt tells Sam Stosur
to lighten up after her latest first-round loss.

A tourist's encounter
with South African wildlife was much closer
than he'd bargained for when the man took a drive
through a national park north-west of Johannesburg. Some rhinos moved
towards the rental car before one of them
walked right up to it. It gave the vehicle a nudge
before running off. Both the tourist and animal
were OK, but the car wasn't as lucky.

Time to check financial markets
now. The Australian share market
closed lower after the nation's trade deficit
widened. ASX 200 finished down 27 points.

Sport shortly, but first Seven News is coming up
in your capital city at 6:00 and these are the stories
making headlines.

Hello.. Up to 20 properties at Kybean
Valley and Carlamina.. near Cooma.. are currently being
impacted by an out of control bushfire. Residents in those areas
were told to flee for their safety earlier today.. while at least 9 water bombers are assisting fire
fighters as they try to water bombers are assisting fire
fighters as they try to contain the 2 thousand hectare blaze. It's as firies fight to contain a blaze
on Learys Lane near Yass. ACT fire fighters've quickly
jumped on several grass fires at Tuggeranong..
Belconnen.. Oaks Estate.. Higgins and Kambah..
aswell as a house fire at Red Hill. 15 locals were also taken
to hospital with heat related Red Hill. 15 locals were also taken
to hospital with heat related problems. While.. strong winds kept firies
busy.. as they battle to keep control of a fire at
Gunning.. which severely burnt a keep control of a fire at
Gunning.. which severely burnt a fireman on the face
and hand yesterday. As people scrambled for
information on the fires today.. the New South Wales.. Rural Fire
Service website crashed under the pressure. And.. a boost for
the Cavalry.. as Adam Buschini was named the Australian
Baseball League's player of the week.

Good afternoon. Lleyton Hewitt has told Sam Stosur
to lighten up as her home-court hoodoo continues
before the Australian Open. Stosur was seeded number nine
for next week's Grand Slam after her fifth straight first-round
loss in Australian tournaments Still recovering from ankle surgery, Stosur was knocked out of the
Sydney International by Zheng Jie.

I don't feel a huge amount
of expectation or weight on my shoulders
or anything like that. She's digging more or less a hole
for herself and putting more pressure on herself
every time she goes out there. In scorching heat, wild card John Millman
was the first Aussie through to the Sydney second round, beating Tommy Robredo
in straight sets.

The big all-Aussie battle
is coming up live on 7TWO. Bernard Tomic
versus Marinko Matosevic are on court from 6pm. Australia's new-look side
has gathered in Melbourne before Friday's first one-day
international against Sri Lanka. Paceman Josh Hazlewood
took three wickets in his return from injury in the Sixers' win over the Heat
last night. The defending champions
will stay alive in the Big Bash if the winless Thunder
can upset the Stars tonight. They are without suspended captain
Shane Warne, who played tennis instead today.

Sydney FC coach Frank Farina's
demanded a change to the A-League's transfer window. Despite being off contract
since December 31, striker Joel Griffiths
can't play for Sydney until the transfer period begins
after January 14 - two weeks later than Europe. For me, it's crazy. It's almost restraint of trade, that
he can't play for those two weeks. After his record-breaking
91-goal year, Lionel Messi has become
the first winner of four straight Ballon d'Or awards
as the world's best player.

Now, it's hard enough to complete
a marathon, let alone win one. So you can imagine
this Kenyan runner's dismay when he's leading the prestigious
king's race in Brazil Thankfully, Edwin Kipsang Rotich
shrugged off the drama and went on to win the race.

They should sign him up to and an Arab Club for breaking a tackle like that. That is the only reason I do not run marathons. -- nRL.

VOICEOVER: Tanning is
skin cells in trauma. Just one damaged cell
can start a melanoma growing. And just 1mm deep, the cancer can get into
your bloodstream and spread.

Now for an update on fires
burning across New South Wales. Three people have been detained
for questioning over a fire at Shalvey,
in Sydney's west. Fire crews worked to douse
the flames on the ground and from the air. A total fire ban issued
for the state today will remain in place tomorrow. More than 130 fires are burning
across New South Wales. Authorities have also issued
warnings for fires burning
in Victoria and Tasmania.

To the national weather now. Troughs are keeping a large part
of the country very hot and dry. A front is bringing hot air
across New South Wales and causing wind to strengthen
in Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia. At the same time that front is also causing showers
in Tasmania and is bringing cooler temperatures. It's currently moving slowly
through New South Wales bringing some welcome relief
for firefighters.

Taking a look around
the nation's capitals tomorrow. Brisbane, fine
and warming up. Chance of morning drizzle
in Sydney. Canberra will be
mostly sunny. Morning shower or two
in Melbourne. Hobart,
a shower or two. Adelaide and Perth,
partly cloudy. A shower or storm
expected in Darwin.

That's the latest
from the 4:30 News team. Enjoy your evening.
See you tomorrow. Supertext captions
by Red Bee Media

BRODIE: Ah, yes, it's that time
of evening, ladies and gentlemen! The question is,
who's ready to win?!

That's good, 'cause here it is -
it's The Price is Right!

And just in time - he's woken
from his afternoon slumber. Give it up for Larry Emdur!

Thank you. Hello, there.
Welcome to the show!

Whoa! What, is there more?
Is that it? Oh. Mwah! Thank you. Hello! Welcome, everyone! Come on down! Thank you. Thank you! OK, this is the bit -
this is the good bit... Did you just say, "Come on down?" Yes, I did. Stealing my lines. You're only renting it from me,
so we're OK. Alright, you have a shot at it. I'll have a go - who wants me to say
"come on down" for them? (ALL CHEER) Alright! We're looking for
contestant number one. Get ready! It's time for Jane Morgan! Come on down!