Australia

Hundreds of firefighters set to battle huge Australia blaze

A fire truck passes burned-out properties in the community of Wye River on Boxing Day Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The fire threatening communities in Victoria is the same one that destroyed more than 100 homes on Christmas Day

More than 500 firefighters are set to battle a blaze in the Australian state of Victoria, one of the world's most fire-prone regions on New Year's Eve.

Evacuation advice has been issued to Kennett River, Grey River and Wongarra. Most residents have left their homes.

But a wind change on Thursday afternoon eased the threat to these communities, fire authorities said.

Firefighters and aircraft from NSW and New Zealand are on standby in case the fire breaks containment lines.

The fire is the same one that destroyed more than 100 homes at Wye River and Separation Creek over Christmas Day.

It now covers around 2,800 hectares (7,000 acres) and is likely to pose a threat to communities along the famous Great Ocean Road for months.

In South Australia a fire is threatening homes at Mosquito Hill south of Adelaide.

Aircraft have been sent to the area but the fire is burning very fiercely, South Australia Country Fire Service spokesman Brenton Eden told the Australian Broadcasting Corp.

Mr Eden said residents in the area should execute their emergency plans.

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