19 November 2007

Weekend Victoria fires; threat continues

Multiple fires reported in western VIC and SA today area over the past two days. Fire conditions have been in the very high to extreme, and fire bans have been issued for portions of SA.

In Victoria, 20 bushfires were sparked on Saturday. Including several in small fires in Gippsland (eastern VIC) which remain listed as 'Going' as of Sunday night (DSE webpage) and one near the main water catchment for Melbourne which required water-bombing.

The largest fires were (and are) in the western portion of the state. These are seen in the MODIS 'Australia5' subset image from the Aqua satellite, captured this afternoon around 1445 LT. Sizes are current as of 2000 LT as gathered from the DSE Fires Today website. Two hotspot areas are seen; the southern-most one is the 'Salt Lake Track' fire in the Little Desert National Park. It has burnt 7000 ha and is not under control at this time. The most northerly Victorian fire is the Lascelles-Wathe fire, which has burnt 2000 ha and also remains uncontrolled.

The fire in NSW is listed as the 'Prill Park Euston' fire on the Current Incidents page of the NSW RFS. No size information is given, but the fire is listed as going. (but that update is fairly old...)

Tomorrow (the 19th) will likely be another big fire day across much of the region. Fire weather warnings (and fire ban in some cases) are in effect for southern NSW, northern SA and the Flinders Ranges, eastern Tasmania and western VIC. Temperatures are also high in other areas (37 C in Melbourne!), and fire danger should be enhanced (although no warnings are in effect).

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