Bushfire out of control in Perth’s south

Bushfire out of control in Perth’s south

27 December 2007

published by parramatta.yourguide.com.au   

Australia — Firefighters in Perth are still battling to control a large bushfire threatening homes in the sweltering city’s south.

Unconfirmed reports indicate three houses have been damaged by the blaze sweeping through the southern Perth suburb of Casuarina.

Fire and Emergency Services Authority (FESA) spokesman Don Fazio said local roads and the major arterial south, the Kwinana Freeway, are closed to traffic.

Some residents have evacuated while others have decided to stay and try to protect their homes.

An evacuation point has been set up at the Kwinana Council buildings in Sulphur Road.

Power has been cut to some homes and inmates at Casuarina Prison have been ordered into their cells, although the jail is not under direct threat.

“The fire is contained but it’s still not under control,” Mr Fazio told AAP.

More than 130 firefighters aided by about 60 police officers and scores more emergency service personnel are involved.

Five aerial water bombers are attacking the flames that have blackened more than 800 hectares since Monday night.

Mr Fazio said fire investigators suspect the blaze was deliberately lit in the Beeliar Regional Park.

Perth has been sweltering through its hottest December day on record, with the mercury hitting 44.2 degrees.

It broke the record for three day average temperatures in Perth, with Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day being the hottest since records began.

A Bureau of Meteorology spokesman said the heat – the seventh hottest day ever recorded in the western capital – and fresh northeasterly winds had combined to create horror fire conditions.

A forecast humid change, expected late on Wednesday evening, will provide some relief, and the temperature is expected to ease to a maximum of 32 degrees on Thursday.

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