Bushfire danger elevated as heatwave continues in Australia
Canberra, Jan 25 (IANS) The scorching heatwave sweeping Australia’s southeastern states continued on Monday, and the hot, dry and windy conditions raised the bushfire danger across the region.
The temperature reached 40 degrees Celsius in Riverina area of the state of New South Wales (NSW), where a high fire danger was forecasted by the state’s Bureau of Meteorology, reports Xinhua news agency.
Meanwhile, a cool change expected on Monday will bring some relief to people living in Melbourne, capital of the state of Victoria, after some outer suburbs reaching 40 or 41 degrees Celsius in the recent heatwave.
A total fire ban was declared for some parts of Victoria and the local emergency service department urged the public to closely monitor the fire danger warnings from Monday no matter if they live in fire ban areas or not.
The similar total fire ban was also declared in Australia’s island state Tasmania, which is located off the nation’s east coast.
In a related development,fFirefighters in South Australia (SA) on Monday continued to fight a bushfire that poses a significant threat to several towns.
More than 300 firefighters spent Sunday night battling the blaze that started at approximately 4 p.m. near the town of Cherry Gardens in the Adelaide Hills.
The fire was downgraded from “emergency” level to “watch and act” but remains a significant threat.
Several buildings have reportedly been damaged but the blaze has been prevented from reaching towns in the region.
South Australian police on Sunday said that they have arrested a man suspected of causing a separate fire in the Adelaide Hills, which wwas extinguished by members of the public after causing minimal damage.