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Out-of-control bushfires destroy homes in Australia


Several out-of-control bushfires in eastern Australia have destroyed a number of buildings and homes, officials have said, issuing emergency warnings.

Three out-of-control bushfires in northern New South Wales (NSW) have been upgraded to emergency level, the Rural Fire Service (RFS) said on Tuesday, adding the bushfires were spreading quickly.

The “very dangerous” blaze burning in Rappville area, has already destroyed homes and buildings, RFS said, asking residents to take shelter and protect themselves from the heat of the fire.

Firefighters are battling high temperatures and low humidity, along with strong winds, creating more spot fires.

RFS spokesman Greg Allan said there would “probably be no reprieve until on Wednesday.”

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Another bushfire nearby in Drake, which has been burning for weeks and is currently over 66,000 hectares in size, is “spreading quickly” and is out of control on the south-eastern side, RFS said.

Also, residents living in the Kildare Road and Tenterfield area have been advised to seek shelter as an out-of-control blaze approached, with ground crews being supported by aircraft to slow the spread of fire and protect homes, RFS said.

In another state, Queensland, a massive fire in south-eastern Lockyer Valley, 80 kilometres west of Brisbane, has claimed at least one house, according to local broadcaster ABC.

“The fire is expected to have a life-threatening impact on the community,” Queensland Fire and Emergency Service (QFES) said.

Temperatures in the Lockyer Valley reached 41 degrees Celsius on Tuesday.

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Also, gusty winds are fanning another dangerous bushfire threatening the township of Thornton, which began last week due to a lightning strike in Glen Rock State Forest, QFES said.

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