Fire fighters are fighting over 100 fires across New South Wales and Queensland in what can only be described as extraordinary fire conditions. To have so many fires this early in the season and some of catastrophic intensity doesn’t bode well for the rest of the year (A catastrophic fire danger rating is as bad as it gets)
Luckily no lives have been lost but one NSW firefighter is in hospital with serious injuries.
With no rain in sight these fires could continue to burn for weeks
In Queensland fifty-two fires are raging across the state in what has been the worst known start to the bushfire season.
At least 20 structures have been destroyed by fire over three days, mostly in the Gold Coast hinterland, where a large out-of-control bushfire has been raging for several days.
The weather bureau has warned residents near bushfires “still have to be extremely cautious” as winds are forecast to reach 65 kilometres per hour on Monday. “We still have to be extremely cautious and aware that the fire dangers are still quite elevated and it’s quite a serious situation”
As fire conditions continue to change Queenslanders are being warned to remain vigilant.
There have been many assets destroyed in the form of infrastructure, sheds, tanks and homes.
At the height of the crisis, about 300 people were staying in evacuation centres in Stanthorpe and Warwick.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Assistant Commissioner Kevin Walsh said residents who have evacuated should not return home unless they have permission from authorities.
In New South Wales it will be another demanding day for firefighters in northern areas of the state, with strong winds set to fan the sixty blazes still active across the state and more properties are expected to be lost.
Five fires are burning out of control and three watch and act alerts are in place for blazes at Drake near Tenterfield, Ebor near Armidale and Shark Creek in the Clarence Valley.
Rural Fire Service (RFS) deputy commissioner Rob Rogers said those two fires were “just absolutely enormous”.
Rural Fire Service crews worked through the night to protect properties and consolidate containment lines, but they are unlikely to catch a break today, with strong south-westerly winds forecast.
A 66-year-old volunteer firefighter who was severely burnt while working on the Tenterfield fireground remains in a critical but stable condition.
The head of the RFS for the Northern Tablelands, Chris Wallbridge, said the fires that ripped through Tenterfield were the most challenging he has experienced in 20 years of service.