On Tuesday 22 January there were 35 wildfires active in NSW Australia alone. Many of these incidents are currently small but all having the potential to develop if not contained.
This fire season is living up to its normal timetable, which sees the culmination of the Australian Tennis Open running into the high fire season.
The largest of the fires are in the central north of the state, 3-4 hours’ drive from Sydney. The Dandry fire has burnt out 55,000 hectares and is still out of control while the Bonnay fire has burnt out 10,000 hectares and is being controlled hopefully in time, so as not to be affected by expected wind changes.
Closer to Sydney a fire in the Royal National Park (Oldest in Australia and second oldest in the world after Yellowstone National Park) has burnt out 2,800 hectares. This fire is only 30km from Sydney’s southern suburbs. Firefighters supported by aircraft are working to strengthen and patrol containment lines as strengthening northeasterly winds increase fire activity.
Image shows the Royal National Park fire visible from aircraft landing at Sydney. Photograph from the author.