'Unbelievable': Long road to recovery for Deepwater victim
THE road to recovery is long for many Deepwater residents after the worst bushfires in the state's history devastated their community, and most are still picking up the pieces.
George Spiteri's property was one of the hardest hit during the disaster, and six weeks later he's still facing the mammoth task of cleaning up.
But it was good news for George who was yesterday inundated with an army of volunteers organised through Team Rubicon Australia who have been helping with the cleanup effort since Boxing Day.
Armed with tools and machinery, they descended on the Deepwater Road property to help in tidying it up.
George, a beekeeper and honey producer who has lived in Deepwater for thirty years, said without the help he'd spend the rest of his life cleaning up.
"I've got hundreds of people helping support me, as you can see there's a lot that needs to be done," he said.
"Rubicon have done a lot, they're a great bunch of people and it gives us a bit of a direction and a bit of a start so we can face it all.
"It's very humbling, there's so many people that are prepared to help it's unbelievable."
George's property is a shell of what it used to be, however he only lost fifteen of his hives with thirty or forty still standing after the fire burned around them.
Team Rubicon Australia estimated George's loss of bees and honey to be in the millions.
George said the fire that has destroyed his property is like nothing he's seen before.
"I usually prepare to block the fires from the northern boundary but it didn't actually come from that side this time, it came from the southwest side which was not as protected," he said.
"The trouble was the wind kept changing a little bit and had everybody running around in all directions.
"The day before I was pushing containment lines for the local fire brigade to try and stop the fire but it proved to be hopeless."
George is now living on a property about 30 kilometres from his home.