Dramatic video reveals Peregian fire horror
Police are allegedly speaking with a 12-year-old juvenile in relation to Queensland's bushfire crisis, it has been reported.
The child is currently being questioned by authorities over the fire which broke out on the Sunshine Coast yesterday afternoon.
The breaking news comes as a bushfire emergency situation has been officially declared at the small coastal town of Peregian Beach on the Sunshine Coast, with at least 10 homes in the area already lost.
Authorities have described the situation as the worst start to the Queensland bushfire season in history, with new footage emerging from inside the Peregian Beach disaster zone revealing the extent of the horror.
The short clip shows lava-like embers being blown across the ground by strong winds as firefighters desperately battle to keep the blaze under control.
Meanwhile, there are around 70 fires burning across the state, with fire now moving fast in a north-northeast direction from Emu Mountain Rd towards Peregian Beach and Peregian Breeze Estate.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services have urged residents of Peregian Beach to evacuate immediately, while those from Weyba, Weyba Downs, Peregian Springs, Castaways Beach and Marcus Beach have been told to be prepared to leave the area.
Hundreds of people have already fled their homes for evacuation centres, with more than 1000 homes experiencing power outages as a result of the blaze.
Very dry and windy conditions are expected along the Queensland coast today, which will likely impact fire zones.
Northern NSW has also been affected by fires, with blazes affecting the town of Yamba and surrounding area.
More than 200 firefighters are now battling the fire at Peregian Beach, which is just metres from homes.
Sunshine Coast photographer Jason Bull took the following photo in Peregian Springs on Monday night.
"This was taken just down the road from where I live. As of 8:30pm there was 40 fire firetrucks trying to fight it and it still not under control. I have heard of 10 homes being destroyed but haven't confirmed that. Very sad. It is still so windy at the moment, its going to be a long night up here."
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) has advised that residents in the Peregian Beach area "will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality".
People who believe they or their property could be under threat is advised to call triple-0 immediately.
QFES also advises residents to listen to their local radio station or visit the Rural Fire Service (RFS) website for regular updates, as well as referring to their bushfire survival plan.
Windows and doors should also be closed to minimise smoke exposure, and residents should drive with caution in low visibility conditions.
Noosa Local Disaster Co-ordinator Carl Billingham told the ABC the Sunshine Coast blaze remained out of control.
"We've got about 250-300 people in our three evacuations centres, I believe we've got three fire water bombing helicopters coming in to try and douse the fire where possible and we've got over 70 tenders in attendance of the fire," he said.
As of this morning, around 70 fires were burning in the states, with the bushfire zone stretching from the southeast corner to the Cairns hinterland.
A vegetation fire was also burning at Miles End near Mount Isa, although the most volatile blaze is around Peregian Beach on the Sunshine Coast.
Fires are still burning on the Granite Belt around Stanthorpe, Applethorpe and Ballandean as well as the Gold COast hinterland, although properties aren't under threat in those areas at that stage.
Another 60 fires are keeping fire crews busy across the border at Yamba, where a southerly wind change could pose further danger.
Scott Cambell from the NSW RFS said crews had spent a tough night protecting homes in Angourie.
More than 500 firefighters, 130 vehicles and 29 aircraft have been deployed across Queensland, with crews from NSW assisting the unfolding situation.