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World Tourists, firefighters flee as new heatwave fans Australia blazes

08:05  30 december  2019
08:05  30 december  2019 Source:   msn.com

‘Burnt Christmas tree’ is a perfect symbol for Australia’s fire-ravaged holiday season

  ‘Burnt Christmas tree’ is a perfect symbol for Australia’s fire-ravaged holiday season While bush fires encroach on Sydney and fill Melbourne's air with soot, those down under are trying to keep a holiday spirit and traditions alive.The “burnt Christmas tree” is on display in Sydney’s central business district as “a symbol of support for those who’ve lost their homes and livelihood,” according to the Australian Red Cross, which helped set it up as part of a fundraising campaign.

Tourists and firefighters were forced to flee vast fires burning in southeastern Australia on Monday, as a heatwave rekindled devastating bush blazes across More than a dozen blazes are raging in the East Gippsland countryside, some so intensely that hundreds of firefighters were pulled back beyond

Sydney – Tourists and firefighters were forced to flee vast fires burning in southeastern Australia on Monday, as a heatwave rekindled devastating bush blazes across the country. Authorities said "quite a number" of the 30 000 tourists visiting the usually picturesque southeast tip of the continent had

Tourists and firefighters were forced to flee vast fires burning in southeastern Australia on Monday, as a heatwave rekindled devastating bush blazes across the country.

Authorities said "quite a number" of the 30,000 tourists visiting the usually picturesque southeast tip of the continent had heeded calls to evacuate.

More than a dozen blazes are raging in the East Gippsland countryside, some so intensely that hundreds of firefighters were pulled back beyond a firefront estimated to stretch 1,000 kilometres (600 miles).

Australian firefighters spend Christmas Day containing blazes; temperatures to soar

  Australian firefighters spend Christmas Day containing blazes; temperatures to soar Australian firefighters spend Christmas Day containing blazes; temperatures to soarIn the state of New South Wales (NSW), which saw entire towns devastated by fires over the weekend, state premier Gladys Berejiklian and the head of the NSW rural fire service, Shane Fitzsimmons, attended a breakfast organized by volunteers in the small town of Colo, 90km (55 miles) northwest of Sydney.

Tourists and firefighters were forced to flee vast fires burning in southeastern Australia on Monday, as a heatwave rekindled devastating bush blazes across the country. Authorities said "quite a number" of the 30,000 tourists visiting the usually picturesque southeast tip of the continent had heeded calls

Hundreds of blazes are burning across Australia , which is experiencing a devastating summer Around 100,000 people were urged to flee five Melbourne suburbs on Monday evening as Authorities had warned tourists enjoying Australia 's summer holidays in East Gippsland that the fires would cut

It was deemed "unsafe" for them to remain in bushland areas, Gippsland fire incident controller Ben Rankin said.

It is the latest emergency in Australia's devastating summer fire season, which has been turbocharged by a prolonged drought and climate change.

Ten people have been killed, more than 1,000 homes destroyed and more than three million hectares (7.4 million acres) -- an area bigger than Belgium -- have been scorched.

Conditions worsened on Friday with high winds and temperatures soaring across the country -- reaching 47 degrees Celsius (116 Fahrenheit) in Western Australia, but topping 40 degrees in every region -- including the usually temperate island of Tasmania.

The situation was "very intense" said Rankin, warning that conditions would worsen later in the day before temperatures drop markedly overnight.

Sydney's New Year's Eve fireworks display to go on amid bushfire threat

  Sydney's New Year's Eve fireworks display to go on amid bushfire threat Australian officials are pushing ahead with Sydney's New Year's Eve fireworks display despite more than a quarter of a million people signing a petition calling for the event to be scrapped. © Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images New Year's Eve fireworks erupt over Sydney's iconic Harbour Bridge and Opera House during the fireworks show on January 1, 2019. The Change.org petition said the funds that would normally be spent on the dazzling firework display should be redistributed towards the firefighting efforts.

Sydney: Tourists and firefighters were forced to flee from vast fires burning in south-eastern Australia on Monday, as a heatwave rekindled devastating bush blazes across the country. Authorities said "quite a number" of the 30,000 tourists visiting the usually picturesque southeast tip of the

A volunteer firefighter died in New South Wales state and two others suffered burns while working on a blaze Authorities had warned tourists enjoying Australia 's summer holidays in East Gippsland that the fires would cut Neighbouring South Australia is also experiencing "catastrophic" fire conditions.

- 'Too late to leave' -

Authorities had warned tourists enjoying Australia's summer holidays in East Gippsland that the fires would cut off the last major road still open.

Victoria Emergency Management commissioner Andrew Crisp said residents and holidaymakers still in the area faced being stranded as it was now "too late to leave", with his agency warning it was "not possible" to provide aid to all visitors in the area.

Australia Sends Army to Fire-Hit Towns as Death Toll Rises

  Australia Sends Army to Fire-Hit Towns as Death Toll Rises Australia scrambled its military to help thousands of people stranded in beach-side towns as deadly wildfires continue to sweep through the country’s southeast. Helicopters and navy ships are being sent to the East Gippsland region of Victoria state, where some 4,000 holiday-makers and locals are cut off in the remote township of Mallacoota. Dozens of homes were destroyed when a bushfire tore through the community on Tuesday, forcing people to shelter on the beach or escape by boats.

Fire services admitted they are struggling to extinguish or even control blazes as a heatwave on Saturday is expected to fan deadly bushfires that already ripped through the Australia 's southeast on New Year's Eve.

Firefighters raced to contain massive bushfires in southeastern Australia Tuesday, taking advantage of a brief drop in temperatures and some much-needed rainfall before another heatwave strikes later this week. Swathes of land have been left charred by bushfires in Australia 's New South Wales.

Neighbouring South Australia is also experiencing "catastrophic" fire conditions.

The Country Fire Service's Brenton Eden said it would be a "very dangerous" day for people in the state, with "dry" thunderstorms -- which produce thunder and lightning but no rain -- already sparking a number of fires including an emergency-level blaze on Kangaroo Island.

"Winds are gusting and unfortunately this is a dry lightning front that is going to move rapidly across South Australia," he told national broadcaster ABC.

Conditions were also expected to deteriorate in worst-hit New South Wales, where 100 fires were burning Monday morning including more than 40 uncontained.

Sydney and other major cities have been shrouded in toxic bushfire smoke haze for weeks, forcing children to play indoors and causing professional sporting events to be cancelled.

Slideshow by photo services

The capital Canberra has cancelled its New Year's Eve fireworks display due to a total fire ban in the Australia Capital Territory, while several regional towns have also followed suit.

A petition to cancel Sydney's famous New Year's Eve fireworks and use the money to fight bushfires ringing the city has topped 270,000 signatures, but officials say the show will go on.

Sydney has spent Aus$6.5 million ($4.5 million) on this year's fireworks display -- funds that the Change.org petition argues would be better spent on supporting volunteer firefighters and farmers suffering through a brutal drought.

The crisis has focused attention on climate change -- which scientists say is creating a longer and more intense bushfire season -- and sparked street protests calling for immediate action to tackle global warming.

While conservative Prime Minister Scott Morrison belatedly acknowledged a link between the fires and climate change, he has continued his staunch support of Australia's lucrative coal mining industry and ruled out further action to reduce emissions.

US sends additional support to Australia to help battle apocalyptic wildfires .
Australia wildfires will now have additional fire personnel from the U.S. to help battle the blazes.Able Seaman Maritime Logistics Personnel, Jayden Mansfield, cross checks names of evacuees from Mallacoota board HMAS Choules in Victoria, on Jan. 3.

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