Road into Peregian fire zone reopens

THE road to Peregian has reopened and residents are pouring back in, as exhausted fire crews continue to battle a dangerous fire on the Sunshine Coast.

Police have advised that residents of Peregian Beach, Marcus Beach and Castaways Beach - areas east of the National Park - can now safely return to their homes, however all other evacuated areas are not yet safe to return to.

"Queensland Police has advised an emergency situation is still in place in the Public Safety Preservation Act declared area around Weyba, Weyba Downs and Peregian Breeze," police said in a statement.

"Residents of these areas should not attempt to return to their homes at this stage.

"David Low Way and the Sunshine Motorway are open to motorists and residents are urged to drive to the conditions and be patient as they make their way home."

Overnight, crews were still struggling with the dangerous fire that's forced more than 5000 people from their homes.

The unrelenting bushfire crisis across her tinder-dry state has prompted Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to cut short an overseas mission to return to Queensland.

Eight fires are in the scope of a police taskforce to investigate the blazes, which have destroyed 17 houses across the state and damaged 67 others.

The fire affecting Peregian Beach, Peregian Breeze Estate and south of Lake Weyba remains extremely volatile.

The fire affecting Peregian Beach, Peregian Breeze Estate and south of Lake Weyba remains extremely volatile.

While crews have managed to slow the progress of the fire, it remains susceptible to flare-ups with weather changes.

It's believed the fire may have been lit by teens.

Supplied image of the Peregian area bushfire on Monday night. Photo taken by resident Ian Martin
Supplied image of the Peregian area bushfire on Monday night. Photo taken by resident Ian Martin

More than 5000 people from about 2500 homes were evacuated on Monday night while flames jumping across back yards and roads terrified residents.

Noosa Mayor Tony Wellington warned them on Tuesday night that it was still too dangerous to go home.

"We are not out of the woods yet, unfortunately, although there has been massive air bombing going on the fire still is threatening the Weyba Downs area."

Forty homes were evacuated at Weyba Downs on Tuesday, just inland from the hard- hit Peregian Beach area, as winds picked up.

Residents like Robert Campbell were stopped by authorities while returning from dinner on Monday night and told to flee.

He still hasn't seen his home.

"It's surreal, I won't know the damage until we find out," Mr Campbell told AAP on Tuesday.

Acting premier Jackie Trad said it was "nothing short of a miracle" more homes weren't lost.

Some 80 fires were burning in the state at one point on Tuesday as conditions worsened in the afternoon.

The Bureau of Meteorology expects the fire danger to drop to 'high' across much of the state on Wednesday and Thursday due to more moderate winds and higher humidity.

But conditions could worsen into the weekend due to a rise in temperatures.

"The frustration, the angst, the uncertainty. You could just see it written all over their faces. These are really trying times," acting Sunshine Coast mayor Tim Dwyer said.

There was better news from the Gold Coast hinterland fire that forced residents to abandon their homes over the weekend.

"This is an afternoon of good news," Scenic Rim Mayor Greg Christensen declared.

"The wind has behaved very kindly to us, and we've been able to tell community members who have been displaced that they can now return home for the most part."

Eight homes and five commercial structures have been destroyed including the 86-year-old, heritage-listed Binna Burra Lodge, while three houses are severely damaged.

The fire there is now under control, but could burn for weeks or longer before much-needed rain puts it out.


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