NSW bushfires: Emergency warnings for five fires

Emergency bushfire warnings have been issued for five NSW blazes as firefighters battle heat and strong winds.

The warnings were issued for blazes at Forster, Stockyard Flat, inland from Port Macquarie, Wandsworth, north of Armidale, Hillville, near Taree, and Gulf Road in Torrington, north of Inverell on Thursday afternoon.

A less serious “watch and act” alert has been issued for fires at Bills Crossing Crowdy, just east of Taree.

The fire at Stockyard Flat is burning across more than 4000ha with residents in the area of Blomfield Road encouraged to seek shelter and protect themselves from the fire’s heat.

The blaze is moving east towards Warnes River.

The Torrington fire remains out of control and has burned through more than 9655ha.

The RFS says the fire is moving in a north-easterly direction towards Silent Grove, Maids Valley and Mole River, and it’s too late for residents in those areas to leave.

Embers are also creating spot fires ahead of the fire front.

The Wandsworth blaze is moving in a north-easterly direction towards Guyra Road, which is closed, and the Macintyre River.

People in the area are advised to seek shelter as it approaches and protect themselves from the heat.

The nine-hectare Forster blaze, in the Goldens Road area, has broken containment lines on the eastern side of The Southern Parkway.

The Hillville fire, meanwhile, is burning in the Talawahl Nature Reserve, in an easterly direction towards the Pacific Highway.

Residents in the Possum Brush Road and Talawahl areas are also advised to seek shelter when the blaze approaches, while those in Hallidays Point or Corrigan should be aware of smoke and embers.

A bushfire burns in Port Macquarie NSW on Saturday. Picture: Saeed Khan/AFPpacific.epeak.in/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/NSW-bushfires-Emergency-warnings-for-five-fires.webp”/>
media_cameraA bushfire burns in Port Macquarie NSW on Saturday. Picture: Saeed Khan/AFP

Seven total fire bans are in place for Thursday and emergency services have warned people to take care, with a forecast high of 37C in Grafton. Some 66 fires are burning across NSW, with 19 uncontained.

The RFS said strong westerly winds are blowing dust across much of the state’s northeast, and the Central Coast and Newcastle areas are likely to endure hazy conditions over the coming days.

“These strong winds are driving up fire dangers. Important today to stay up to date, review your bush fire survival plan and know what you will do if threatened by fire,” the RFS said on Twitter.

Total fire bans are in place in the far north coast, north coast, Greater Hunter, Greater Sydney, New England, northern slopes and northwestern regions. There is also a very high fire danger rating in Illawarra/Shoalhaven, Monaro Alpine, southern ranges and central ranges.

The warm, dry and windy conditions are expected to continue into Friday.

Originally published as ‘Absolutely terrifying’ bushfires rage

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