Bushfires Grip Australia's South As CFA Issues More Fire Warnings (VIDEO)
By Reissa Su | February 10, 2014 1:31 PM EST
REUTERS/Country Fire Authority
A helicopter dumps water on a bushfire burning in the Grampians bushland in the southeastern Australian state of Victoria, about 300 km (186 miles) west of Melbourne, January 17, 2014. REUTERS/Country Fire Authority (CFA)
Southern Australia continues to face another day of spreading bushfires in Victoria showing no signs of slowing down despite cooler weather conditions that may have temporarily eased the threat.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported the Country Fire Authority (CFA) has issued more fire alerts on Feb. 10 as warm temperatures and the lack of rainy weather anytime soon increased the threat of bushfires. A spokesman for the state control center has confirmed that seven of the fires blazing in Victoria were seen as suspicious. The arson squad was sent to investigate.
Meanwhile, an emergency fire warning remained for the fire near Mickelham Road, north of Melbourne. Residents in Forbes, Goldie, Goldie North, Tantaraboo, Willowmavin were advised to be on alert as a wildfire burns toward the Kilmore-Lancefield Road.
Various reports noted the CFA was trying to control the 25 fires across the state while 14 warnings have remained in place for residents to be on their guard.
Three schools in Goongerah, East Gippsland were closed on Feb. 10 for the safety of the public concerned. Most of the roads in regions near spreading bushfires were temporarily closed. Residents in these areas were told to monitor the news before going on a trip.
In Victoria, 14 schools were closed as parents were encouraged to monitor the Web site of the education department for more advisories.
The CFA said firefighters are facing 150 fires across Victoria described as the worst bushfires since Black Saturday. The southeast of Melbourne faces the greatest threat since cooler weather conditions are yet to arrive.
More than 1,100 firefighters have been working to control the bushfires. New Zealand firefighters have arrived to assist the CFA and crews of the Metropolitan Fire Brigade.
On Feb. 8, Fire Services Commissioner Craig Lapsley has warned the residents in Victoria to be alert and prepare to evacuate if fire conditions worsen. Record-breaking temperatures and prolonged heatwaves triggered fire conditions in the state.
It was in Victoria where a firestorm had burned entire villages in 2009 killing 173 people and damaging 2,000 homes.
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