Sydney, Nov 27: A massive wildfire is continuing to threatening homes and property on the central coast of Australia's Queensland State on Tuesday, with warm weather making the conditions extremely difficult for firefighters.
Although crews worked around the clock last night trying desperately to contain the 17,000 hectare blaze between Bundaberg and Gladstone, conditions on Tuesday morning saw the wildfire intensify even further as temperatures reached in excess of 30 degrees celsius.
According to local media reports, several homes have been destroyed by the fire and around 800 residents in the townships of Deepwater, Baffle Creek, Rules Beach, Oyster Creek and Miriam Vale were forced evacuate their properties.
In order assist the efforts of local crews and bring some much-needed relief to exhausted personnel, the bordering State of New South Wales (NSW) has sent 100 firefighters to join the operation.
"Queensland has seen unprecedented conditions over the last few days, with more than 40 bush fires now burning across the state," NSW Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant said in a statement.
"The NSW Rural Fire Service crews deployed last night will work with fellow Queensland rural firefighters and provide relief for local crews who have worked very hard over the last week."
"These volunteers from NSW will carry out frontline firefighting operations."
For the first time Queensland have also deployed a large air tanker from NSW to assist with the water-bombing efforts.
"It's so smoky out there we didn't get to see the whole fire, all we got to see was the section we were working on," water-bomber pilot John Gallaher explained to ABC radio.
"It's burning hot, crews have their hands full." "It's going to take people on the ground to put these out. Our role is essentially to slow the fire down for them," he added. With temperatures expected to be in the high 30's on Wednesday, a total of eight aircraft will continue water-bombing missions on Tuesday in a frantic effort to subdue the wildfire before the conditions deteriorate even further. (UNI- XINHUA)