Australia - Bush fires update (ECHO Daily Flash of 11 January 2020)

According to Australian authorities, as of 11 January, the number of fatalities resulting from the bushfires remain to 27 people, 20 in New South Wales (NSW), 4 in Victoria, 3 in South Australia.

The estimated burnt area has been revised to approximately 10.2 million hectares (5.3 million hectares in NSW) for the current fire season. In total, more than 2,570 houses have been destroyed.

As of 11 January at 7.30 UTC, only one emergency warning has been issued (for Victoria). 15 fires are classified under watch and act level (second higher level) : 10 in Victoria, four in New South Wales and one in Western Australia.

A cold front is currently moving across the south-eastern parts of the country and will continue to track across Victoria and New South Wales (NSW) during today 11 January. The south-westerly wind change behind the cold front will be gusty, particularly around the fire affected areas.

According to the EU Joint Research Centre's Global Wildfire Information System (GWIS), the fire danger forecast, although temporarily slightly improved, will remain considerably high to extreme across eastern Australia from 11-12 January and up to 15 January. The fire danger will improve in South Western Australia and will be medium to high, especially in the coastline where a large number of active fires is still present.