SYDNEY, Nov. 25 (Xinhua) -- A major bushfire in Australia's Queensland state has sparked mass evacuations in at least two large communities, with a severe heatwave hampering firefighting efforts and the inferno set to continue for days, authorities said on Sunday.
"The intensity of this fire covers some 9,000 hectares, and the flames are more than 10-to-12 meters high. This is extremely unusual for Queensland, and the worst is not over. We expect this to be happening for a few more days," the ABC news channel quoted the state's premier Annastacia Palaszczuk as saying.
According to ABC news channel, firefighters and police have been urging residents of the Deepwater and Baffle Creek areas to evacuate immediately as the flames head toward their properties. More than 40 fire trucks, 100 firefighters and six waterbombing aircrafts were deployed to contain the fires.
"This extreme heatwave that we're experiencing across the state, in particular the northern parts of the state, is an extreme weather event and we haven't seen this in Queensland before," the channel quoted state fire and emergency services inspector Andrew Sturgeous as saying.
The inspector said that strong northerly winds were poised to push the fire toward local communities until late Sunday night and even after that it will continue to burn and spread right throughout the night until Monday.