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Australia urges people to flee as fires set to surge today

Reuters/Sydney
Filed on January 4, 2020
Australia urges people to flee as fires set to surge today

(Agencies)

A number of fires burnt out of control in South Australia as temperatures topped 40 degrees C.

Authorities urged Australians on Friday to evacuate parts of the eastern states of Victoria and New South Wales to escape bushfires they fear are set to burn out of control this weekend.

In a harbinger of the searing conditions expected, a number of fires burnt out of control in South Australia as temperatures topped 40 degrees C across much of the state and strong winds fanned flames.

Victoria declared a state of disaster across areas home to about 100,000 people, with authorities urging people to evacuate before a deterioration expected on Saturday.

"If they value their safety they must leave," Michael Grainger of the state's police emergency responders told reporters. "I'd suggest personal belongings are of very, very little value in these circumstances. "These are dire circumstances, there is no doubt."



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