Emergency Warnings as Gospers Mountain Fire Burns Out of Control
The New South Wales Rural Fire Services issued an emergency warning to residents in the Hawkesbury area to Sydney’s northwest, on Tuesday, November 19, as the Gospers Mountain Fire continued to spread. As of the evening of November 19, the fire, in the Wollemi National Park area, had burned more than 355,000 acres and was out of control, the fire service said. The fire service advised locals in several areas to monitor conditions. “Leaving early is your safest option,” it said. Residents of Colo Heights, however, were told it was too late to leave. “Seek shelter as the fire approaches,” the service advised. Further afield, the fire was sending plumes of smoke over Sydney, where the air quality was reported locally as 20 times worse than Beijing. Credit: NSW Rural Fire Service via Storyful
Thick smoke is expected to blanket Sydney today as more than 50 blazes continue to burn across New South Wales.
The NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) said the smoke was blowing from the Gospers Mountain bushfire burning in the Hawkesbury area and was affecting broad areas across the north coast, Central Coast and Sydney regions.
The haze is expected to continue for several days and children, older adults and people with heart and lung conditions are being warned to stay indoors.
Smoke is blowing over Sydney from the Gospers Mountain bushfire. Picture: AAP Image/Dean LewinsSource:NewsComAu
The state of emergency declared by Premier Gladys Berejiklian ended on Tuesday, but multiple watch and act alerts remain in place for fires across the state.
Firefighters are now bracing for potential heatwave conditions in both New South Wales and Queensland, where some areas are forecast to reach 40 degrees Celsius this week.
#Heatwave conditions, severe in some areas, will develop in NSW and the ACT in coming days, with inland areas most affected. Beat the heat with these handy tips from NSW Health: https://t.co/23fUcEADcI For the latest weather forecast: https://t.co/OjBapTUURPpic.twitter.com/W1iHeySi7v— Bureau of Meteorology, New South Wales (@BOM_NSW) November 18, 2019
More than 70 fires are still burning across Queensland and Fire and Emergency Services Acting Commissioner Mike Wassing fears the emergency will continue into next year with no prospect of significant rain on the horizon.
Catastrophic fire danger conditions have also been declared for much of South Australia, with more than 100 schools closed and at-risk residents told to leave their homes.
The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast a maximum 42C for Adelaide, while the mercury is expected to reach 45C at Murray Bridge, 44C at Renmark, Port Augusta, Port Lincoln and Whyalla, and 43C at Port Pirie.
Seven districts have been declared catastrophic fire danger zones for Wednesday – including the Mount Lofty Ranges and Mid North near Adelaide – while two were rated ‘extreme’ and six ‘severe’.