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This Day in History

Australian History

Saturday, July 11, 1992. :   Seven people are drowned after being washed into the sea at the Kiama blowhole, on the New South Wales coast.

     Kiama is an attractive town and Local Government Area 120 km south of Sydney on the south coast of New South Wales, Australia. The name "Kiama" is derived from the Aboriginal word Kiarama, which means "place where the sea makes a noise". This is in reference to the famous Kiama Blowhole, a natural cavern at Blowhole Point. The ideal conditions in which to view the blowhole are when the seas are running southeast: at these times, the blowhole can erupt in a spray of water up to 60m in height.

Kiama was discovered by explorer George Bass on 6 December 1797. Bass noted the evidence of volcanic activity in the distant past, and of the blowhole itself, he wrote:
"The earth for a considerable distance round in the form approaching a circle seemed to have given way; it was now a green slope ... Towards the centre was a deep ragged hole of about 25 to 30 feet in diameter and on one side of it the sea washed in through a subterraneous passage ... with a most tremendous noise ..."

This beautiful attraction was the scene of a tragedy on 11 July 1992. Seven people drowned at the Kiama blowhole after they were washed into the ocean by a powerful wave whilst watching the phenomenon. Afghani refugee Fared Cina, his wife Angella, and their young daughter Baran drowned, along with Mrs Cina's nephew Arash. Also killed were Nasarin Zobair, her daughter Kahlida and her son Mustafa.

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