According to reports, Charles Darwin University vice chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks was in Darwin, Australia when he was notified by the Country Fire Services and his friends that there was a major fire that was west of his place where he had a house and a 45-hectare wheat farm. However thanks to the fact that his farm was connected online, he could monitor the area remotely via his CCTV.
Unfortunately for Maddocks, the fire reached his farm where his entire crop of wheat was engulfed in flames in minutes, but the bright side is that thanks to his smart sprinkler system, he was able to keep the fire from burning the rest of his home and his animals that were kept on the property. “The fire came up all around the house, but my ability to turn on irrigation systems from my phone in Darwin and the fact that I had neighbours patrolling with fire units, we’re lucky we got away with a house.”
Maddocks adds, “To suddenly watch your 15 years of labour of love just go to pot in front of your eyes is a bit surreal. We couldn’t have done anything … when you know you’re four-and-a-half hours across the country watching it by remote control, you feel so helpless.”