Firefighters pushed to ‘uncharted territory’


The body was found at the Kangawalla fire, near Glen Innes in NSW, the state’s Rural Fire Service confirmed, while another two remain unaccounted for and 30 injured.

At 6.30am this morning, 77 bush or grass fires continued to burn with 42 of those identified by the NSW Rural Fire Service as “uncontained”.

Six fires are currently listed as at emergency levels in the state, forcing firefighters into “uncharted territory”, while another nine are at watch and act level.

“We are still seeing erratic and dangerous fire behaviour across the remainder of fire grounds, which continues to pose a threat to homes,” the RFS said this morning.

RELATED: Fire fighters battle more than 80 bushfires burning across NSW

NSW Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said he had previously only seen six to eight emergency-level blazes at once, meaning the current situation was “unprecedented”.

“Unfortunately we are in uncharted territory this afternoon — we’ve never seen this many fires concurrently at emergency warning level,” he said on Friday.

Fires raged through the night in NSW. Picture: AAP Image/Dan HimbrechtsSource:AAP

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8.20am

ONE PERSON CONFIRMED DEAD

The remains of a person have been located by crews from the NSW RFS at the Kangawalla fire, near Glen Innes.

Two people remain unaccounted for.

The remote and sporadic nature of the multiple fires have made rescue and battle efforts extremely difficult, the NSW RFS told ABC.

“(There is) significant damage and destruction to isolated rural communities, villages and towns,” the spokesperson said.

“Early estimates from the field are that at least 100 homes have been destroyed.

8.00am

QUEENSLAND: MULTIPLE COMMUNITIES TOLD TO LEAVE

The QLD Fire and Emergency have issued multiple leave notifications as fires continue to rage across the state.

Tarome, Lower Beechmont, Thornton, Lefthand Branch have been told to leave immediately, while Clumber and Moogerah (south of Boonah) were told to prepare to leave earlier this morning.

3.47am

COOL CHANGE FOR QUEENSLAND FIREFIGHTERS

Cooler conditions may give firefighters a break on Saturday morning as they battle blazes in Queensland, but winds could still make their work difficult. More than 50 fires were burning at one point on Friday in dry, windy and dangerous fire conditions.

Police declared an emergency at Lower Beechmont in the Gold Coast hinterland early on Saturday as a bushfire bore down, threatening homes. Residents in its path were ordered to evacuate to Nerang.

An emergency was also declared in Cooroibah on the Sunshine Coast on Friday, as people there were evacuated.

Noosa Mayor Tony Wellington said the situation was “very volatile” early on Friday night.

The fast-moving fire was keeping emergency services on their toes as the winds were changing direction, he said.

“It’s going to be a long night, it’s going to be a distressing night,” Mr Wellington said. “My sympathies go out to everyone.”





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