Firefighters are still battling out-of-control bushfires rage in WA today, as temperatures rise past 38 degrees Celsius, wreaking devastation across the state.
WA Premier Mark McGowan spoke to the media today, calling the fires “unforgiving.”
He stated that the two big flames that were raging had been subdued, but that one remained uncontrollable.
“I’d want to recognise the firemen and other personnel who are sacrificing
precious time with their families to combat the bushfires rage in WA disaster,” Mr McGowan said.
“The circumstances have been harsh, with high gusts and searing temperatures.” People have put their lives in danger to save the properties and animals of complete strangers.”
The Margaret River fire, according to the premier, is now “contained but not controlled” and is travelling south-westerly.
Around 100 hectares of land had burned in the area, with more than 100 firemen on the ground battling the flames.
Mr McGowan noted that the cause of the fire near Margaret River is still being investigated and that numerous routes remain closed to the public.
The Perth Hills fire is now “contained and stationary,” but authorities have issued a warning about the dangers that flaming embers pose.
“Burning embers are still a worry, with roughly 165 hectares burned,” Mr McGowan added.
“Ariel assistance, including a huge air tanker, is now aiding.” An evacuation centre has been built, and certain routes in Wooroloo remain closed.”
The fire has destroyed at least one house, with three buildings “also affected.”
During record-breaking heat weather that began before Christmas, lives have been threatened all weekend.
Extreme temperatures combined with strong winds have produced ideal conditions for wildfires, and the circumstances are expected to persist throughout the day.
The Bureau of Meteorology has issued high fire risk warnings for Gascoyne Inland, Coastal Central West, Inland Central West and North, and the Lower West (including Perth), Pilbara, Gascoyne Coast, North Interior, Coastal Central West and South, Inland Central West and South, and Ninghan.
Residents at Wooroloo, Chidlow, and Gidgegannup, north-east of Perth, as well as Treeton and Osmington in Margaret River, were told to leave immediately overnight.
In an emergency bushfire warning, the Department of Firefighters and Emergency Services warned, “If the path is clear, escape now for a safer spot.”
“Don’t wait and see; leaving at the last minute is lethal.”
The situation is considerably worse in Warrigal Estate, where residents have been urged to stay put because “moving now would be dangerous.”
Across the state, hundreds of firemen and dozens of firefighting vehicles, including a big air tanker, are battling the flames.
Emergency WA has issued a number of bushfires rage in WA warnings and alerts to households in various regions.
It’s deja vu for Wooroloo residents still reeling from the February fire that destroyed 86 houses.
Jan Rose, a resident, characterised the fires as “very terrible stuff.”
“I believe it would be a foolish person to claim they weren’t overwhelmed and scared at this moment,” Ms Rose said.
Several structures have been set on fire. Firefighters are unsure if the burning structures are homes or sheds, but they are doing everything possible to rescue them.
Last night, another blaze burned only yards from houses.
It was 1.30 a.m. and 30 degrees outside in the Perth suburb of Hilbert when the forest caught fire.
Police believe arsonists started not one, but two bushfires in Australia 2021 the region overnight.
According to Rik Mills of the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, both incidents consumed a total of 30 hectares.
“At this point, both fires are deemed suspicious,” he added.
As firemen battled to put out the flames, 10,000 houses in Perth were left in the dark, and the Roleystone neighbourhood was also cut off from the water supply.
Michelle Stirling, a resident, is concerned that her alpacas would die due to a lack of water on-site.
Perth saw its warmest Christmas Day on record.
Western Power insists on reconnecting houses before midnight but makes no assurances.
“It’s 100 kilometres of network and it’s in some extremely dense bushfires rage in WA,” Western Power’s Zane Christmas explained.
“Because the fire hazard in WA index is so high, we must thoroughly monitor the network before turning it on.”