Friday's Urban Legend: RIDICULOUS
Australia is a small country in the middle of the Pacific Ocean (see map). It is best known for its wild dogs that eat babies, race riots on public beaches, and for 1000 mile long rabbit-proof fences that don't work.
Judging by the buzz on radio stations in Canada, Australia is now becoming known for something else [Crikey! Be careful about Canada…]. It's getting a reputation for extreme stupidity.
The Australian government has a website to inform travelers about foreign countries. Here's what it says about Canada [Travel Advice for Canada].
We advise you to exercise caution and monitor developments that might affect your safety in Canada because of the risk of terrorist attack.The rating for Canada is "Exercise Caution." This is the same rating that's given to Vietnam, Serbia, Malaysia, United States, United Kingdom, Belgium, Albania, France, and the Netherlands.
Pay close attention to your personal security and monitor the media for information about possible new safety or security risks.
We advise you to exercise caution and monitor developments that might affect your safety in Canada because of the risk of terrorist attack. Pay close attention to your personal security and monitor the media for information about possible new safety or security risks.
Countries receiving the safest rating ("Be Alert to Your own Safety") include: China, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, Roumania, Hungary, Macau, Norway, and South Korea (Republic of Korea).
Apparently there are some Australians who might want to visit Canada in spite of the terrorists. Not to worry. The Australian government has some additional warnings that will discourage such a foolish trip. The weather in Canada is dangerous ...
Heavy snowfalls and ice in the winter can make driving dangerous. The wind-chill factor can also create dangerously cold outdoor conditions. Transport Canada provides detailed information on road conditions across Canada. You can also get tips for winter driving from the Canadian Automobile Association.OK, so there's some truth to that statement. If tourists want to visit some parts of Canada in the winter (for skiing) then they should know how to cope with snow.
But the Australian government doesn't stop there. They need to inform their citizens about other common dangers in Canada.
The province of British Columbia in western Canada is in an active earthquake zone.Scary stuff. I think I'll build a tornado shelter and prepare for bush fires in my neighbourhood. I wonder if there are any other countries where the threat of bush fires is severe? I seem to remember something about suburban houses being destroyed by fires in other countries but never in Canada, to the best of my knowledge.
Alberta and British Columbia are also subject to avalanches. Information on avalanches is available from the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Tornadoes can occur in some areas of Canada between May and September. For more information on tornadoes see Environment Canada's website and the National Hurricane Centre. In the event of a Tornado you should monitor local and international weather on local television and radio.
Bush and forest fires can occur any time in Canada. You should consult local news reports and authorities before visiting forested areas and follow the advice of local authorities.
Australians, you should be ashamed about the terrorist warning for Canada. On the other hand, the weather thingy isn't unusual. All countries have silly advisories about weather on their websites. Here's the one from Canada about Australia [Travel Advice: Australia].
Australia is located in a seismic zone. Canadians should know the address and telephone number of the High Commission of Canada in Canberra in the event of an emergency.
Severe flooding is affecting parts of the country, particularly New South Wales. Rising floodwaters may have an impact on transportation and other services. Travelers should be aware of the increased threat of water-borne disease and take appropriate precautions. Canadians should follow the advice of local authorities and maintain flexible travel plans.
The cyclone season extends from November to April. Cyclones may occur along the coastal areas of Queensland, Northern Territory, and Western Australia. Travellers should keep informed of regional weather forecasts and plan accordingly.