Australia: State of emergency declared in New South Wales after unprecedented bushfires 

WION Web Team New Delhi Dec 19, 2019, 08.36 AM(IST)

File Photo: Smoke of fire rise next to firefighting vehicles as bushfires burn in Newnes Plateau, New South Walles, Australia. Photograph:( Reuters )

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NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the state of emergency, the second declared in the state since an early, drought-fueled bushfire season began in September, was due to "catastrophic weather conditions".

Authorities in New South Wales state have declared a seven-day state of emergency following unprecedented bushfires raging across the region. 

Some 100 fires have been burning for weeks in the state, with half of those uncontained, including a "mega-blaze" ringing Sydney, covering Australia's biggest city in a haze of toxic smoke, reported news agency AFP.

The report quoting NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the state of emergency, the second declared in the state since an early, drought-fueled bushfire season began in September, was due to "catastrophic weather conditions".

The country experienced its hottest day on record Tuesday, with the average nationwide temperatures reaching 40.9 degrees Celsius (105.6 degrees Fahrenheit), which is expected to be surpassed as an intensifying heat wave spreads across the east.

Temperatures are expected to peak at 41 degrees Celsius in central Sydney and 45 degrees Celsius in the western suburbs on Thursday, while turbulent winds of up to 100 kilometres (60 miles) in the afternoon expected to fan bushfires burning ever-closer to the city.

(With inputs from AFP)