(QUEENSLAND, Australia.) JUST IN: Ten homes have been lost at Peregian Beach on the Sunshine Coast where police have declared an emergency situation due to the rapidly escalating bushfire threat as residents are warned to evacuate the area #AceNewsDesk reports

#AceNewsReport – Sept.09: Police have urged residents at Peregian Springs and Peregian Beach to leave immediately and for anyone outside the zone to avoid travel to the area: Sunshine Coast Council disaster management coordinator Cathy Buck confirmed the number of homes lost, with more properties still under threat as authorities struggle to deal with the pace of the emergency: Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) north coast Chief Superintendent Michelle Young said the fire flared in Peregian Springs about 5pm and was extremely fast moving: She said houses from Peregian Beach to Marcus Beach were under heavy ember attack: “There is two kilometres spotting of this fire and we have a significant amount of houses that have been breached by fire,” she said.

A bushfire burning close to homes at Peregian Springs was fanned by strong winds.Photo: A bushfire burning close to homes at Peregian Springs was fanned by strong winds. (Supplied: Daniel Mcardle)

Key points:

  • Homes are lost at Peregian Beach from a rapidly escalating fire that is spreading embers for two kilometres
  • Police urge residents of Peregian Springs and Peregian Beach to leave quickly as an emergency is declared
  • O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat in the Gold Coast hinterland is a refuge point for more than 90 people as fire impacts the O’Reilly area

The glow of an approaching bushfire behind trees near a backyardPhoto: Several homes have been lost in the Peregian Springs bushfire. (Instagram)

“We’ve got 50 kilometre per hour gust winds pushing that in a north-easterly direction at the moment, which is causing this fire to spot and because it’s so dry we’re getting embers travelling that huge distance.” …………The Bureau of Meteorology said the strong winds were set to continue until at least 3am.

Chief Superintendent Young said the bushfire was also heading towards Coolum State High School: “We’re pleading with anyone that’s south of Coolum State High School to consider evacuation if the wind changes it will come down towards Coolum,” she said.

QFES Assistant Commissioner Neil Gallant said the fire was moving north toward Marcus Beach: “We’ve currently got 44 vehicles on scene and another 16 responding to that area,” he said: “As that fire pushes further north, any homes that are in that path, emergency alerts have gone out to those areas.”…………The declared emergency zone is bounded by Old Emu Mountain Road, David Low Way, the Sunshine Coast Motorway and Podargus Parade: An evacuation centre has been established at the Coolum Surf Life Saving Club: The evacuation centre at the J community centre at Noosa Junction is at capacity, but there is another centre open at the Noosa Leisure Centre in Noosaville.

A group of people standing at the door of a public building.Photo: The J evacuation centre at Noosa Junction is already at capacity. (ABC News: Owen Jacques)

Peregian Springs resident Daniel Mcardle said he first saw smoke early on Monday afternoon before the bushfire escalated: “A little bit of smoke and whatnot [was] coming from behind us, it didn’t look like it was somebody having a backyard fire pit or something like that,” Mr Mcardle said: “Then I heard the sound of choppers … and saw the helicopters with the buckets come past: “Then from there it escalated very quickly — I heard the sirens and a lot of police and fire trucks……………….”I can still see it now, I’m standing out the front and I can still see the fires and embers across the rooftops.”

A bushfire flares close to suburban housesPhoto: The rapidly rising bushfire threat at Peregian Springs prompted an emergency declaration. (Supplied: Daniel Mcardle)

On Monday afternoon, QFES issued an emergency warning for a “dangerous” bushfire heading towards the O’Reilly area in the Lamington National Park, with advice to leave immediately: Queensland remains in the midst of the worst bushfire threat in recorded history and an omen of things to come, the state’s fire service has warned: Eighty-seven fires are now raging across the state in what has been the worst known start to the bushfire season: Late on Monday, QFES issued an emergency warning to leave O’Reilly immediately as a “dangerous fire” was travelling in a westerly direction towards Lamington National Park Road.

#AceNewsDesk reports ……………..Published: Sept.09: 2019: Read More: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-09-09/queensland-fires-sunshine-coast-stanthorpe-beechmont-binna-burra/11490356

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