Heatwave triggers bushfires in NSW

Heatwave triggers bushfires in NSW

7 January 2009

published by www.theaustralian.news.com.au

Australia — An emergency was declared in the Southern Highlands, southwest of Sydney, and residents were warned to brace for further outbreaks today. The fires come after three days of sweltering heat, in which temperatures have climbed above 40C.

In the Morton National Park, about 9km east of Wingello, near Bundanoon, about 300ha of forest had burnt out last night, after a lightning strike on Sunday night. A bushfire emergency was declared at about 3pm yesterday as westerly winds continued to push the fire east, further into the national park.

The NSW Rural Fire Service, National Parks and Wildlife Service and Forests NSW were last night using seven aircraft to contain the blaze.

“It’s too dangerous to have firefighters in there at the moment due to terrain and the weather conditions in that area,” a NSW RFS spokesman said. “But it’s still very deep inside the national park, so thankfully we haven’t had to evacuate anybody yet.”

Weather conditions are expected to change tomorrow after another hot day, bringing cooler temperatures and higher humidity.

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