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Australia: Bushfire season – what to expect this year

Today marks the start of the bushfire season across southern Australia, just ahead of an early hot spell in the southeast.

It’s that time of the year again when Australian’s need to make sure they are prepared for these deadly and destructive weather events. 

Bushfires are also a vital part of the nation’s ecosystems and become most dangerous when several weather conditions combine.

High temperatures and dry air are fundamental to bushfires, but the real danger begins when the winds pick up and become gusty or quickly change direction.

Windy and hot days are the days that bring most hazardous conditions for our fire agencies and often local wind effects can catch fire fighters off guard.

Windy conditions not only fan the flames, providing more oxygen to the fuel, but ferry embers far ahead of the fire front.

Sudden wind changes also exacerbate the spread of fire, changing the sides or ‘flank’ of the fire into a much wider fire front.

It is these changes that lead to the most dangerous conditions for firies and residents alike.

Currently, hot and windy conditions are resulting in dangerous conditions over Western Australia’s Kimberley.

As a result, the West Kimberley Coast and Kimberley Inland fire weather districts currently have a Catastrophic Fire Danger rating.

This long weekend, a significantly early warm spell will spread into the southeastern states.

Near the end of the spell, northerly winds ahead of a trough will increase ahead of a cold change.

These hot and gusty northerly winds will bring particularly dangerous conditions to eastern SA and across VIC on Tuesday. 



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