Almost 10,000 people in central Queensland, Australia have been urged to flee immediately due to over 100 bushfires which have swept across the state.
The fast moving fires are so catastrophic, they’ve been likened to the disastrous wildfires which recently ripped across the state of California in the US.
According to ABC News Australia, the bushfire warning level in some parts of Queensland has been raised to an emergency warning; the highest in the state’s history.
Deputy Commissioner Bob Gee has warned residents of the potential for fatalities, stating:
People will burn to death. Their normal approaches probably won’t work if this situation develops the way it is predicted to develop.
It is no different to a Category 5 cyclone coming through your door.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) have issued the following warning to residents in the area of Winfield:
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) advises there is a bushfire approaching Winfield. Leaving immediately is the safest option, as it will soon be too dangerous to drive.
Follow your bushfire survival plan now. If you do not have a plan, your safest option is to leave immediately if it is clear to do so. If you cannot leave, identify where you will seek shelter from the bushfire.
If you are not in the area, do not return, as conditions are too dangerous.
The warning continued:
Conditions are now very dangerous and firefighters may soon be unable to prevent the fire advancing.
The fire may pose a threat to all lives directly in its path. Fire crews may not be able to protect your property. You should not expect a firefighter at your door: act now.
Separate warnings have also reportedly been given for the areas of Mullet Creek and Euleilah, Deepwater, Baffle Creek, Rules Beach and Oyster Creek.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has now pledged federal help for the bushfire crisis, implementing the commonwealth disaster assistance plan which will allow Queensland to seek both federal and financial assistance.
Our thoughts are with those in Australia who’ve been affected by these bushfires.
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.