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That’s all from us for today’s bushfire blog. To keep up to date on any potential fires overnight, head to the NSW Rural Fire Service website.
For now, here’s what made headlines throughout Wednesday:
Stay cool for the rest of the night and thanks for joining.
Beachgoers at Maroubra beach where temperatures reached 34 degrees today.Credit: Rhett Wyman
The NSW Rural Fire Service has warned today’s fire conditions are representative of what’s to come over the summer, as 68 fires continue to burn across the state.
Spokewoman for the Rural Fire Service Angela Burford said as of 8pm, there were 68 fires burning and just under 30 were not contained.
“The good news is all the fires are back at advice level,” she said.
A helicopter dumps water on a bushfire that NSW Rural Fire Service are controlling from a property on Silverdale Road in Wallacia.Credit: Kate Geraghty
“The firefighters did an incredible job keeping the fires at bay today considering some of the extreme conditions we were facing. Some of the winds were gusting at over 100km per hour which definitely had potential to destroy properties.”
The coming days will be a welcome reprieve for firefighters as the cooler temperatures mean remaining fires from today can be extinguished, however it will not be for long.
“We will be seeing a return to fire conditions in early next week according to the advice we’re getting at this stage,” Burford said.
“We are definitely going to see warm, windy conditions this year and it’s going to be very challenging.”
While Sydney was close to cracking a September record, the heat did not get to the highest September temperature since records began.
Sydney’s Observatory Hill reached a peak on Wednesday of 33.8 degrees about 2pm, while Penrith hit 34.9 degrees about 2.20pm.
The hottest September day in Sydney since records began in 1859 was 34.7 degrees on September 26, 1965.
Temperatures are expected to continue going down throughout tonight, as Sydney is currently at 27.3 degrees while Penrith sits at 24.5 degrees.
As of 6pm, there are 73 fires burning in the state with 30 uncontained as conditions are expected to ease tomorrow.
Over 1000 firefighters are working across NSW to contain the blazes as the state grapples with the unseasonably hot weather.
NSW Rural Fire Service stated there will be a total fire ban in place for the North Western area tomorrow.
“Despite easing condition in coming days, it will remain dry,” the RFS posted on Twitter.
The grass fire burning 15kms south of Captains Flat in the Snowy Monaro region has been downgraded as the threat to properties has reduced.
About 2.50pm, a grass fire moving in a south-easterly direction began at a watch and act level as it burnt near Jerangle Road and Foggy Forest Drive in Anembo.
The fire remains out of control and is 112 hectares in size, however from 6.11pm the NSW Rural Fire Service stated the fire threat to properties has reduced.
Residents are still advised to keep monitoring conditions and stay up to date.
The grass fire in Sydney’s south has been downgraded to advice level after NSW Fire and Rescue have been fighting the blaze into the afternoon.
About 4.42pm a grass fire was burning in bush land in the vicinity of Pheasants Road in Wedderburn, 5kms south-east of Campbelltown.
Crews and water-bombing choppers fought the blaze into the later afternoon and the fire is currently being controlled from 5.36pm.
The fire has expanded across 10 hectares and is moving away from homes.
Chopper aerial bombing a bushfire at Wedderburn.Credit: Nine News
As a poignant reminder of the dangers fire and rescue volunteers go through, a pilot has escaped injury today after his helicopter crashed into a dam while fighting a bushfire west of Brisbane.
The helicopter was collecting water from a dam at a private property in Tarome at the Scenic Rim before 3pm on Wednesday to help battle a blaze at Tregony which has been burning for several days.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services stated the aircraft was hovering close to the dam when it hit the surface. The male pilot managed to escape the wreckage and swam ashore and is uninjured.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau is investigating the crash.
The Tregony fire is one of dozens that have burned across Queensland as warm, dry, windy conditions herald an early start to the bushfire season.
Fire crews have been working to beat back the blazes and reduce fuel loads ahead of peak fire conditions on Thursday when parts of the state are expected to swelter in temperatures 10 degrees above average.
Temperatures remain in the low 30s this afternoon, which means Sydneysiders have been flocking to beaches.
From 5.00pm, Sydney’s Observatory Hill recorded 31.9 degrees, while Penrith is at 32 degrees.
The unseasonably hot spring day has meant Sydneysiders have been taking advantage of the beaches.
Herald photographer Rhett Wyman has captured beach goers at Maroubra Beach soaking up the sun.
A grass fire in Sydney’s south is burning out of control to a watch and act level, as residents are being told to prepare and continue monitoring conditions.
The NSW Rural Fire Service alerted to a fire burning about 4.42pm in bush land in the vicinity of Pheasants Road in Wedderburn, 5kms south-east of Campbelltown.
The fire is burning in a south-easterly direction under strong north-westerly winds as firefighters work to control the blaze.
NSW Rural Service spokeswoman Angela Burford said the alert has been upgraded because the fire is close to homes but is burning away from the properties.
“It’s quite close to homes but the fire’s not an immediate threat because it’s burning away from them,” she said.
Residents in the vicinity of Pheasants Road are being told to prepare now and keep watching for updates.
The total fire ban will be lifted for Sydney tomorrow, as only the North West of NSW will have the ban in place for Thursday.
The temperature is expected to drop 11 degrees between 4pm and 10pm on Wednesday, with tomorrow’s high predicted to be 22 degrees in Sydney.
Most regions including Greater Sydney and Central Ranges will have a moderate fire danger rating tomorrow.
A total fire ban will be in place for the North Western region of NSW, which includes the city of Tamworth.
NSW Rural Fire Service predicts hot, dry and windy conditions for the north of NSW as fire danger is forecast for several areas.
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