Bundaberg's worst floods could spawn a new disaster in the
Queensland city, firefighters warn.
The Rural Fire Service has issued the state's first fire ban
of the season.
The two-week ban on open fires takes effect tomorrow night
and covers the council areas of Bundaberg, Gympie, the Fraser
Coast, Cherbourg, North Burnett and South Burnett.
Fire permits have also been cancelled.
Bundaberg is still recovering from the phenomenal damage
caused by devastating floods in January. Now residents are
being warned of a related threat.
"It is an area of concern, it got a lot of rain ... and
because of that rain there is a lot of thick vegetation and
now it's fully dried out," rural fire service Assistant
Commissioner Neil Gallant told AAP.
A severe fire warning has also been issued for the state's
southwest, where hot, dry, gusty conditions are expected
The Channel Country, Maranoa and Warrego areas will be
affected, the Bureau of Meteorology says.
Firefighters have warned residents in affected areas to have
their bushfire survival plans in place because any blazes
that do break out could be unpredictable, uncontrollable and
Meanwhile, 100 Queensland firefighters are flying to NSW
today to help fight devastating blazes.
Mr Gallant said 50 urban and 50 rural firefighters would
relieve exhausted interstate colleagues, who've been fighting
the fires for days.
He said Queensland's fire season had been average so far, but
that still meant a lot of fires.
"We've had some large ones in central Queensland a couple of
weeks ago that went for many days, but largely in unpopulated
areas," he said.
"But fires can devastate farming areas out there. People
often think 'Oh it's grass burning'. But in these dry
conditions that's vital food for stock."
More than 60 per cent of Queensland is officially drought
declared, and many farmers are already in a dire situation.