Rural Fire Service issues 14 emergency warnings as New South Wales faces catastrophic fire conditions across greater Sydney, Hunter and Illawarra/Shoalhaven with strong winds and high temperatures forecast as dozens of bushfires continue to burn across Queensland and Australia’s east coast • • • If you are in a bushfire affected area stay tuned to your local emergency broadcaster. Full alerts can be found and
The federal government’s aviation authority has labelled the use of personal drones over fire grounds “sheer stupidity” that risks lives after an incident on Monday night, AAP reports. Crews on Sydney’s north shore were responding to reports of smoke when they spotted a civilian drone hovering over the area.
A watch and act alert has been issued for a fire at Cliff Drive, Katoomba, in the Blue Mountains.
Firefighters are on scene at a fire at Cliff Drive, Katoomba. Residents should monitor conditions and take advice from firefighters on the ground.
More images are coming in of brightly coloured fire retardant being dropped on homes in South Turramurra, in Sydney’s north.
The air assets were on to that Turramurra fire quick. Red fire retardant everywhere
Fire retardant has been dropped on houses in South Turramurra as an emergency-warned fire burns very close by.
The NSW Rural Fire Service has just issued an emergency alert for the Carrai Creek fire, near Armidale. It is now too late to leave if you’re in the area west of Kempsey. Residents are advised to seek shelter as the fire approaches.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Carrai Creek (Armidale LGA) Fire is threatening Lower Creek. If you're in the area of Lower Creek take shelter NOW. It is too late to leave. If you're in the area west of Kempsey, you are at risk. Seek shelter as the fire approaches.
Vision of the South Turramurra fire on Sydney’s north shore clearly shows the bushfire is threatening properties. Firefighters are battling to save homes using aerial firefighting units dropping retardant onto the flames. This is precisely the situation NSW firefighters were hoping to avoid. Fires are now hitting areas of dense population.
Now a fire close to Sydney. For context, South Turramurra is 26km from the CBD. About the same distance as Springvale from centre of Melbourne’s city
It’s Christopher Knaus here again, taking over our coverage temporarily from Josh Taylor. Bushfires are now spreading to Sydney’s north shore. ABC vision shows a blaze burning through grassland and bush at South Turramurra, on Sydney’s north shore.
Canoon Road, South Turramurra (Ku-ring-gai LGA): A bush fire is burning in the area of Canoon Road, South Turramurra. The fire is spreading quickly. It is too late to leave. Seek shelter as the fire approaches.
Here’s what we know following the latest update from the Rural Fire Service commissioner, Shane Fitzsimmons. There are 78 fires burning across NSW with 47 of those not contained. There are 12 fires at emergency warning level and eight fires at watch and act level.
An emergency warning has been issued for Gospers Mountain in the Lithgow local government area.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Gospers Mountain (Lithgow LGA) The fire is currently 4km from Putty and is threatening the areas north of Kallool and south of Fleet Wing. If you are in these areas, seek shelter as the fire approaches.
There’s also an updated fire weather warning from the Bureau of Meteorology. Catastrophic fire danger remains in place in the greater Sydney, greater Hunter and Illawarra/Shoalhaven regions. It is extreme fire danger for the north coast, southern ranges, central ranges, New England, northern slopes and north-western regions. It is severe fire danger for the far north coast, the far south coast and Monaro Alpine districts.
Residents of Harper Street in Greta are being advised to seek shelter as firefighters battle a fast-moving grassfire.
Firefighters are on the scene of a fast-moving grass fire at Harper St, in Greta. Residents should seek shelter as the fire approaches.
The Public Service Association is blaming the NSW government for a 35% decline in the number of fire-trained rangers at the National Parks and Wildlife Service. In 2011, when the Liberal government came to power, there were 289 rangers, of which there were 28 senior rangers, according to the provided figures. Now there are just 193 rangers and no senior rangers, representing a 35% cut to fire-trained staff. The PSA acting general secretary, Troy Wright, attributes the job losses to millions of dollars in cuts and forced restructures: If the origins of these catastrophic fires across the state are in national parks then it is the National Party and part of the Berejiklian government that are responsible for the lack of preparedness. It is the complete absence of proper funding, not some mercurial green movement as the Nationals allege. Overall, there has been a 35 percent cut to fire-trained positions in National Parks. The loss of expertise is irreplaceable – area managers with 30 years’ experience have left roles and not been replaced.
An emergency warning has been issued for Myall Creek Road, Bora Ridge in the Richmond Valley local government area. It is too late to leave, and the Rural Fire Service is advising people to seek shelter. This brings the total of emergency warnings to 11.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Myall Creek Rd, Bora Ridge (Richmond Valley LGA) The fire is spreading quickly with spot fires reported around New Italy. If you are in the area of Bungawalbin, New Italy and The Gap Road, it is too late to leave. Seek shelter.
Terry Green, who runs the Tuncurry bowling club, says they’ve got quite a mix of evacuees at the moment. “We’ve got kids and dogs and birds and cats, and we’ve even got a goldfish here,” he says. “We’re a bit of a menagerie at the moment and it looks a bit like Noah’s Ark out the back.”
Josh Taylor here covering the ongoing fire crises on the live blog this afternoon and into the evening. Thanks to my colleagues Naaman Zhou and Chris Knaus for their coverage so far.
There is a total fire ban in New South Wales today, and the police are taking that very seriously. The NSW police say they’ve taken action against three men for breaching the ban, and a child for committing an act of arson.
Bill Ludwig, mayor of Livingston Shire, has just been speaking about the fire in Yeppoon in central Queensland, which destroyed eight homes. Ludwig previously said he had never seen a fire in the region that started so fast, moved so quickly, and put so many people under threat. He told the ABC on Monday that the climate was clearly changing and it was having “dramatic consequences that were unfolding every year and appear to be escalating”.
Plesman has lived on the property in Nymboida on and off since she was born. She said in the past decade, the weather had become increasingly unpredictable in terms of both fires and drought. Storms that used to occur of an evening in summer and fill up the dams had become less reliable.
A before and after of Gemma Plesman’s home:
“We had four houses on the property,” Gemma Plesman says. “Three were burnt completely. My mum and two of my aunties lost their homes. It’s really horrific, they’re completely gone.”
An emergency warning for Wine Country Drive, in North Rothbury. This brings the total number of emergency warnings back up to 10.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Wine Country Dr, North Rothbury (Cessnock LGA) The fire is burning in the area of Wine Country Drive at North Rothbury and spreading quickly. Property is under threat. If you are in the area, it is too late to leave. Seek shelter.
The climate rally outside NSW Parliament House earlier today has raised $4,500 for the Rural Fire Service. The rally called on the government to take action on the climate crisis and to better fund emergency services.
The Whans Road fire has been downgraded from emergency to watch and act. “The fire has been downgraded due to improved conditions,” the Rural Fire Service said. “Residents in the area should continue to monitor the conditions and take advice from firefighters on the ground.”
Watch and Act: Whans Rd, Llangothlin (Armidale LGA) The fire has been downgraded to Watch and Act due to improved conditions. Residents in the area should continue to monitor the conditions and take advice from firefighters on the ground.
The latest highest wind speeds, from the Bureau of Meteorology. Nowra has experienced a top wind speed of 90km/h and Moss Vale 85km/h.
A 10th emergency warning for NSW. The Rumba Dump fire – burning in the area of Elands, Bobin and Marlee. The fire is near the Hillsville Road fire, which is also at emergency level.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Rumba Dump (Mid-Coast LGA) Fire burning in the area of Elands, Bobin & Marlee has breached containment lines and is spreading quickly. If you are in Elands, Bobin, Marlee and areas NW of Wingham, seek shelter as the fire front arrives.
There is now also an emergency warning in Western Australia, as a fire on the north-east fringes of Perth is posing a possible risk to lives and homes. An emergency warning has just been issued for the western part of Bullsbrook in the City of Swan.
11:32 AM -Bushfire EMERGENCY WARNING for western part of BULLSBROOK in the CITY OF SWAN:
Melinda Pavey is the NSW member for Oxley. She’s at the Kempsey Showground, which is acting as an evacuation centre for people affected by a number of fires in the area, including the emergency level Carrai East fire. “We’re just hearing and listening to people and their stories,” Pavey says. “One family from up at Bellbrook went down to the Kempsey races and they came home and the house was gone.”
The ninth emergency warning. The fire near Kian Road has breached containment lines and is burning towards Macksville. “If you’re near Talarm, Macksville, Allgomera Creek, seek shelter,” the Rural Fire Service says.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Kian Rd (Nambucca LGA) The fire has breached containment lines and is burning towards Macksville. If you're near Talarm, Macksville, Allgomera Creek, seek shelter as the fire approaches. Protect yourself from the heat of the fire.
More from the Bureau of Meteorology, which has warned that conditions will become “increasingly dangerous throughout the afternoon”. The bureau’s state manager, Ann Farrell, told AAP a low-pressure system would bring “strengthening, hot, dry winds” that will make firefighters’ job much harder.
Fitzsimmons stresses that all the fires are “getting closer to population centres”. “That’s why we invested very much in the predictive maps earlier today,” he says. “To show that these fires are getting closer to population centres.”
There are currently eight emergency warnings around NSW. There are 71 fires across the state, 40 uncontained. Eight are at emergency warning level and 10 are at watch and act. Fitzsimmons says all eight fires are near population centres.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Reserves Rd, Mares Run (Mid-Coast LGA) Fire is burning in the area of Mares Run towards Cooplacarripa and is spreading quickly. If you are in Cooplacarripa, you are at risk. It is too late to leave. Seek shelter as the fire approaches.
The NSW Rural Fire Service commissioner, Shane Fitzsimmons, says that winds are up to 80km/h across the greater Hunter and 70km/h in the Blue Mountains. “This will only worsen through the afternoon as the weather conditions continue to deteriorate,” he says. “Those winds will only get stronger in the afternoon.”
Naaman Zhou here, taking over the blog again. Thanks to my colleague Chris Knaus. We are expecting another update from the NSW Rural Fire Service commissioner in a few minutes.
Let’s take a moment to recap the day, as NSW battles unprecedented fire danger. The main concern continues to be around bushfires on the mid-north coast of NSW, but we’re also seeing significant fire danger in Queensland and South Australia.
Residents near Baryulgil are being warned to seek shelter as the Washpool state forest fire approaches. It is now too late to leave. The NSW Rural Fire Service has issued an emergency warning for the fire, the seventh such warning for fires across the state today.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Washpool State Forest Fire is threatening Baryulgil. If you're in Baryulgil seek shelter as the fire approaches. It is too late to leave. If you're in Eighteen Mile, Fine Flower, Dumbudgery or Carnham, monitor conditions.
A sixth emergency warning has just been issued by the NSW Rural Fire Service. This one is for the Liberation Trail fire, near Clarence Valley. The fire has breached containment lines. Authorities are advising residents in the areas of Nana Glen and Coramba that they should leave immediately towards Coffs Harbour.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Liberation Trail (Clarence Valley LGA) The fire has breached containment lines. If you are in the area of Nana Glen or Coramba and surrounding area, leave now towards Coffs Harbour. Do not wait.
Conditions are expected to worsen significantly this afternoon as a wind change moves through NSW. Meteorologists are expecting the change to bring southerly winds up the coast, reaching Wollongong between 5pm and 6pm, Sydney at 7pm, Newcastle between 8pm and 9pm, and Port Macquarie about midnight. That change complicates the fires significantly. It not only changes the direction of the fire front, but intensifies winds. Stronger winds will carry embers well ahead of the fire front and spread fires with greater speed.
Severe Weather Update: wind change affecting , 12 November 2019. Video current at 12 pm AEDT Tuesday 12 November 2019. For the latest weather warnings visit and follow advice from emergency services.
Just a little more on those school evacuations in north-west NSW and the Upper Hunter. We’ve heard from the education minister, Sarah Mitchell, who said the number of schools now evacuated is nine. The schools were evacuated as a precautionary measure and on the advice of the Rural Fire Service, she said. “Safety comes first – we need to take precaution and evacuate to get children out of there,” Mitchell told the ABC.
A fire at Carrai East, north-west of Port Macquarie, has burst containment lines and is spreading quickly. The NSW Rural Fire Service has just issued an emergency warning for the fire, saying residents west of Kempsey are at risk and should not now leave their homes. They have been told to seek shelter as the fire front approaches. It is the fifth emergency warning to be issued by the NSW RFS today.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Carrai East Fire (Kempsey LGA) Bush fire is burning west of Kempsey. The fire breached containment lines & is spreading quickly. If you are in the area west of Kempsey you are at risk. It is too late to leave. Seek shelter as the fire approaches
Bushfires have reportedly forced the evacuation of eight schools in NSW’s north-west and Upper Hunter regions.
: Students are being evacuated from up to eight schools in NSW’s north-west and Upper Hunter regions because of worsening fire conditions.
Now, over 575 schools not operational tomorrow - and more than 20 TAFE campuses. The latest list here:
Here’s another view of that smoke haze, this time from satellite imagery. This is from the Weatherzone meteorologist Ben Domensino.
An arc of smoke stretches more than 3,000km off Australia's east cost this morning.
We just mentioned the significant drops in air quality in NSW and south-east Queensland. This vision shows the thickness of the smoke haze drifting across parts of the east coast.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services has separately advised residents near Mount Alphen and Double Top, Tarome, and Clumber and Moogerah to prepare to leave.
PREPARE TO LEAVE: Mount Alphen and Double Top (part of Clumber fire) bushfire as at 11.50am Tues 12 Nov:
PREPARE TO LEAVE: Tarome bushfire as at 11.35am Tues 12 Nov:
PREPARE TO LEAVE: Clumber and Moogerah (south of Boonah) bushfire as at 11.40am Tues 12 Nov:
The NSW Rural Fire Service has just issued an emergency warning for Whans Road, Llangothlin, north of Armidale and south of Glen Innes. A fire is now burning there and spreading quickly. The RFS has advised anyone in the area of Llangothlin and its surrounds that it is now too late to leave. It has advised those in the area to seek shelter as the fire approaches.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Whans Rd, Llangothlin (Armidale LGA) Fire is burning near Llangothlin and spreading quickly. Properties are under threat. If you are in the area of Llangothlin and surrounds, it is too late to leave. Seek shelter as the fire approaches.
It’s Christopher Knaus here taking over our live coverage of the bushfire emergency from Naaman Zhou. The bushfires have caused significant deteriorations to air quality across NSW and south-east Queensland. Much of Sydney and the Hunter regions have been advised to “stay inside as much as possible” as winds push smoke from the devastating mid-north coast bushfires down the state’s east coast. A drop in air quality is also hitting the Illawarra region, south of Sydney.
Earlier today, before the three emergency warnings and updates from the NSW Rural Fire Service, the Nationals MP Barnaby Joyce claimed that two people who died over the weekend were “most likely” Greens voters, as the political stoush over the fires continues. The current deputy PM, Michael McCormack, had said yesterday that any link between climate change and the worsening bushfires was “woke capital-city greenies ravings” and “cheap political point scoring”. The New South Wales deputy commissioner Rob Rogers said earlier that hazard reductions have gone on each and every year, each year we get as much done as we would like ...do they have enough resources to get it done? I just think that it, here, in the first instance, they may need more resources, but they also need legislation, regulations, to allow them to get in there and do it in a more substantial way. And that the crazy thing there, and I acknowledge that the two people who died were most likely people who voted for the Green party, so I am not going to start attacking them. That’s the last thing I want to do.
Queensland’s acting fire commissioner says there are 55 fires still burning in the state, managed by more than 1,000 personnel. He says they have 40 aircraft either ready or in use, and he is “comfortable with where we are at today and how we are set in terms of our readiness”.
Palaszczuk said air quality particle ratings were 10 times higher than usual today, stretching from Brisbane to Ipswich and the Gold Coast. A meteorologist from the weather bureau adds there is no significant rainfall on the horizon for Queensland.
The premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, has just given a press conference thanking the state’s firefighters, the defence force and the extra 110 firefighters from Tasmania, Victoria, the Northern Territory and New Zealand. She confirms that 12 homes have been destroyed.
Fitzsimmons concludes by saying that the worst is yet to come, and the blazes will continue through the night with “no reprieve”. “We’re going to have a long night ahead of us because this southerly is going to continue through, and those strong winds are not going to get to northern NSW until near midnight,” he says.
Thankfully, there are still no new fires in the catastrophic warning areas, Shane Fitzsimmons says. He says the weather forecast is “unfolding as was predicted”.
There are several hundreds of homes in these areas, he says, but many have already left early. He says firefighters have been in the area, sharing advice and “guiding people about leaving and leaving early.”
Three fires are now at emergency warning, Shane Fitzsimmons says. They are: the Thunderbolts Way fire (north of the Gloucester), the Gulf Road fire (south-west of Tenterfield), and the Hillville Road fire (south-west of Taree).
The NSW RFS commissioner, Shane Fitzsimmons, is speaking again in now. Moments earlier, the RFS for Gulf Road, Torrington.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Gulf Rd, Torrington (Tenterfield LGA) The fire has breached containment lines and is spreading quickly. If you are in Emmaville or Stannum, seek shelter. If you are in Deepwater, monitor conditions. Be aware of smoke and embers.
A southerly change is heading up the coast, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.
change is moving up the coast. Has moved through Merimbula with a 10 degree temperature drop! Expecting a squally change through , and later this afternoon and evening. See latest observations at
Tuesday's dry 'southerly buster' will cause any fires burning near the NSW coast to abruptly change direction. The latest ACCESS-C model has the change reaching Sydney around 7pm.
Port Macquarie resident Patrick Rudd says now is the time to talk about climate change, as fires edge closer to his hometown. The 15-year old high school student told AAP: “If now is not the time to talk about climate change, then when is?”
The first emergency warning of the day . A fire is burning and spreading quickly in the area of Thunderbolts Way and Nowendoc Road on the mid north coast of NSW.
EMERGENCY WARNING: Thunderbolts Way, Bretti (Mid-Coast LGA) Fire is burning in the area of Thunderbolts Way and Nowendoc Rd & is spreading quickly. If you are in the Nowendoc & Mt George area, it is too late to leave. Seek shelter as the fire approaches.
Power outages have struck homes in Sydney’s north, according to AusGrid. The affected suburbs are Ryde, Gladesville, Putney and Tennyson Point.
Power is currently out to homes and businesses in Ryde, Gladesville, Tennyson Point and Putney. An emergency crew is working to safely restore power. For formation, visit:
It seems to be business as usual in the Blue Mountains town of Katoomba this morning. Guardian Australia spoke to a number of business operators who said everything was fairly calm along the main street, despite the forecast catastrophic conditions. The cafes are full and the historic local hotel, the Carrington, is bustling.
Temperatures are now above 30C in many parts of the state that are covered by the catastrophic danger warning. In the Hunter, it is above 30C at: Cessnock airport, Gosford, Lake Macquarie – Cooranbong, Maitland airport, Mangrove Mountain, Merriwa and Williamtown.
Northern Territory firefighters have just announced that they will be travelling to Queensland today to help with the effort as well. Precise details are still to come.
A senior Queensland fire chief has said the state is struggling with a lack of resources, AAP reports. An assistant commissioner of the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, Tony Johnstone, told ABC Radio: “We’re having a problem with resources. We need to admit that.”
A NSW Ambulance spokesman also adds that since 5am, they have seen “a slightly elevated workload across the state”. He says there were 31 instances of respiratory conditions – 17 within greater Sydney, nine in the north of NSW and five in the south.
Around the state, there is also “greater spread potential for many of our fires”, Fitzsimmons says. This means that many of the predictions from last night of fire spread are being exceeded. Earlier we saw fires near Port Macquarie were growing.
On the Gosper Mountain fire and the St Albans area, Fitzsimmons says: “You’re talking a very large bushfire, burning through forested country. You’re talking about relatively isolated settlements along and up the Putty Road, the communities of Mellong, and Howes Swamp. “The decision now is to leave now. We know the fire is building. If you haven’t already done so, now is the safest time to go.”
Shane Fitzsimmons is speaking in Sydney now. The NSW RFS commissioner says: “We are certainly starting to see an increase in fire activity … Up north, we’ve got a couple of the fires particularly that are starting to develop.”
Advice: Gospers Mountain (Lithgow LGA) Fire activity is increasing. If you are in the area of Mellong, St Albans and Upper MacDonald, and your plan is to leave, leave now to a safer location. A safer location may include a built up area, well away from bushland.
The Sydney protest also heard a message from Sian, a schoolgirl on the north coast, who lost her home and said the fires were unlike anything we’ve seen before. “The fire was unstoppable,” she said. “I’ve heard from those who stayed, of walls of flame 40 metres high. It was catastrophic.
About 1,000 protesters gathered outside Sydney’s Parliament House on Macquarie Street for a hastily convened demonstration demanding urgent climate action this morning. Protesters carried signs reading: “Scientists were wrong: it is much worse” and “If now is not the time to talk about the climate emergency, when the hell is?”
A says an army training exercise may in fact be the cause of a Gold Coast hinterland fire on Saturday that destroyed homes. The Australian defence force declined to answer questions from the ABC, but a colonel from the Kokoda barracks conceded in a message to the local rural fire brigade that the army may be responsible.
The NSW education minister, Sarah Mitchell, has confirmed that some schools were damaged by fires yesterday. She told Sky News that in the catastrophic fire danger areas: “All schools that might be close to bushland, close to nature reserves, they are automatically shut. Areas where there is high risk, we would much rather keep students out of harm’s way ... we want to take that cautious approach.”
The commissioner of the RFS, Shane Fitzsimmons, will be giving regular updates today – on average every two hours, but more frequently during peak times. We brought you the 9am update live, when he said no new fires had started in catastrophic areas. The next one is in 15 minutes.
Vision from Port Macquarie.
Smoke clouding Port Macquarie and the ocean this morning
Here’s a new prediction map for the north coast. There is some significant spreading predicted around Port Macquarie, compared with last night’s expectations.
Latest fire prediction map for north coast fires, based on latest observations and forecast. More areas included in risk area if fires take a run as expected today, including Wauchope. Detailed map at
The latest weather observations from the Bureau of Meteorology in some of the catastrophic areas: Merriwa and Maitland airport in the Hunter are already at 30C with gusts of 32km/h and 20km/h respectively.
Here’s the latest on air quality. On the table below, PM2.5 particles are the one to watch out for. Readings have surged past 300 at Newcastle and Armidale over the past 24 hours.
More on air quality. Over past 24 hours, an average of 224 on the air quality index at Chullora at Sydney. 340 at Newcastle, 338 at Armidale. Hazardous starts at 200
The fires have also forced the Coffs Harbour-based Rally of Australia car race, part of the World Rally Championship, to shorten what would have been a title-deciding race. The route will be shortened from 324.53km to 94.37km, with that stage used repeatedly, according to Reuters.
According to GoFundMe, more than $250,000 has been raised in the past 72 hours for bushfire victims and firefighters. Donations have come from more than 30 countries.
The NSW premier, Gladys Berejiklian, has responded to claims from the fire brigade union that its budget has been slashed. She said claims $13m was cut from the urban firefighting budget was false, AAP reports. Fire Brigade Employees’ Union state secretary, Leighton Drury, said Fire and Rescue NSW had its budget cut by $12.9m.
Some newer figures: 57 fires, 28 uncontained. The weather is still on track for the predicted conditions.
NSW is on track to experience the fire conditions predicted. Catastrophic fire danger is forecast for Greater Sydney, Greater Hunter & Illawarra/Shoalhaven. There is widespread Severe & Extreme fire danger. At 9am, there are 57 fires, 28 are uncontained.
Hot, dry and windy conditions will increase this afternoon in southeast , a Fire Weather Warning is current for the Darling Downs and Granite Belt and Southeast Coast today. Current Fire Weather Warnings can be found here:
There are 54 fires burning in NSW, 26 of them uncontained, 13 of them at watch and act. “For the rest of the day, we really need people to stay alert, stay informed, and stay safe and act in accordance with your plan and the advice that might be given out throughout the day,” Shane Fitzsimmons says.
There are no new fires yet in any of the catastrophic areas, Shane Fitzsimmons says. “We still have, though, these fires burning up in northern NSW, which are starting to increase in activity, and we’re getting reports of some fire spread particularly in the fires further up in the northern areas of NSW,” he says.
The NSW RFS commissioner, Shane Fitzsimmons, is speaking in Sydney now. “We are starting to see an increase in the wind speeds, especially in the ranges,” he says. “We are expecting those to continue to strengthen from 10 to 11 o’clock late morning.”
Here is a map of those more than 100 existing fires that Stuart Ellis was mentioning.
The chief executive of the peak body for fire services, Stuart Ellis, has told Radio National today his main advice is to “get out” of fire-prone areas. He said today was especially worrying because there are already existing, “significant” fires, even before the catastrophic conditions developed.
The Taree Show Society has opened its grounds to people who want to camp with their dogs and horses. “We have put some 113 horses in stables and we have set up sites for people in caravans, trucks and tents,” said the society’s Rhonda Crisp.
From a correspondent, Christine Tondorf, in Taree: There are queues at petrol stations, schools are closed and Mid-Coast council has suspended non-essential services as fires continue to burn in the region.
More on air quality – a shows metropolitan Sydney is as high as 125 on the air quality index, which is deemed unhealthy for sensitive groups. It’s 161 in Newcastle, which is unhealthy for all, and 174 in Armidale. Twenty-five is the World Health Organisation’s .
In Queensland, there are now 55 fires blazing this morning, but none at emergency level. There’s a severe fire danger warning for the south-east coast – which includes Brisbane and the Gold and Sunshine coasts – and the Darling Downs and Granite Belt region.
A reminder of what those conditions mean:
We are still on track for today’s catastrophic forecast, as of 8.16am AEDT. It may be calm in some parts of the state, but the weather is still set to make this one of the most dangerous days the state has seen, the RFS says.
While it may appear calm but smoky in many areas this morning, our weather experts are staying across conditions. They say we are "on track" for what was forecast. Dangerous day ahead.
Four updates from Queensland this morning. Four fires remain at prepare to leave: ; (south of Boonah); ; (south west of Ipswich). These Tarome, Clumber and Moogerah and Rosevale fires are “not directly impacting properties”, but Queensland RFS say this “could change quickly and those who haven’t already left, should be ready to leave”.
PREPARE TO LEAVE: Mount Alphen and Double Top (part of Clumber fire) bushfire as at 6.50am Tues 12 Nov:
Yesterday the deputy prime minister, Michael McCormack, said that drawing the link between climate change and bushfires was “woke capital-city greenies ravings” and “cheap political point scoring”. Adam Bandt responded, saying that former fire chiefs had warned the government that pollution and climate change would make bushfires worse.
The Australian's front page for Tuesday, a day foreacsted to have catastrophic fire conditions, is mostly just attacks on the Greens
The Greens MP, Adam Bandt, has been on Radio National this morning, responding to claims from senior Nationals MPs that the Greens are to blame for the fires owing to their opposition to hazard reduction burns. Bandt rubbished the claims, saying this was a matter for the NSW government.
Air quality readings for Greater Sydney, the Central Coast, the Northern Tablelands and the Hunter range from “very poor” to “hazardous” this morning. In Sydney, there are particle readings between 150 and 199, with over 200 in the tablelands. Yesterday NSW Health put out out an alert that people with asthma, emphysema and angina should be careful.
Haze is already hanging over Sydney this morning.
Even more schools have closed since yesterday evening, when the list was at more than than 575 closures. As of 6.10am AEDT, there are now more than 600 schools closed. The .
Welcome to our continuing coverage of the bushfire crisis across and Queensland. Today, there are catastrophic fire danger conditions across the Illawarra and Shoalhaven, the Greater Hunter and Greater Sydney. The catastrophic rating is equivalent to the conditions of Victoria’s Black Saturday bushfires of February 2009.
Danger Ratings map for for today (Tues). now has 3 areas listed as . Important to note that while Greater is listed as one, that area extends well beyond the city. In this case Greater Sydney stretches to the &
Under today's weather forecast, fires on the north coast will spread quickly and impact on people and properties. Check for advice for what to do. Avoid bushland areas. Safer locations may include built up areas away from bushland.