ACT in state of emergency as ‘unpredictable’ bushfires threaten homes
CANBERRA: On Friday, Australia’s capital region declared a state of emergency due to an out-of-control forest fire raging uncontrollably towards its south.
It is the first fire warning for the Australian Capital Territory region since 2003 when wildfires killed four people in a single day and damaged nearly 500 homes.
The threat is raised by a wildfire on the southern fringe of Canberra that has destroyed more than 21,500 hectares (53,000 acres) since it was started by heat from a landing light by a military helicopter on Monday, the Emergency Services Agency said.
The state of emergency sets clear expectations for our community that we need you to be alert, reporters have been told by Emergency Services Minister Mick Gentleman. This is the ACT’s worst bush-fire season since 2003.
The fire is burning at an emergency level, the highest on a three-tiered hazard scale, and created hazardous nearby spot fires, officials of the agency said.