Kim and her family (from L-R) Alana, Katy, Adam, Craig and Kim.
Craig was at home with the children - 14-year-old Alana, 10-year-old Katy and seven-year-old Adam* - when the message came through.
‘It’s too late to leave. Take shelter now.’ it read.
“The wind was blowing so hard you could barely stand in it. So I said, kids, we need to get going now,” Craig recalls.
They were only three kilometres from the highway so he knew they had a good chance of getting somewhere safe. He wasn’t going to risk staying, not with that wind, not surrounded by that massive plantation.
So Craig bundled the kids into the car along with the pet dog and cockatoos and hurtled down the road as fast as he could.
It was a decision that ultimately saved their lives.
“I got around the corner and I saw a huge plume of smoke,” says Craig.
Ten minutes later their home and everything surrounding it was gone.