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A FOUR-DAY heatwave is forecast to hit the Perth metropolitan area in the coming days, with authorities warning of a high bushfire danger.

Today the mercury is set to rise to 38C, followed by 41C on Sunday and Monday, then dropping back to 38C on Tuesday.

Bureau of Meteorology duty forecaster Andrew Mostyn said the searing conditions could prompt extreme danger on Sunday and Monday.

“It doesn’t appear as though it will be catastrophic for the fires but with the hot dry weather, it will probably be extreme,” Mr Mostyn said.

“On Sunday and Monday northeasterly winds will drag hot air from the inland Pilbara region down towards Perth.                                                                                                

“However, along the coast, there will be an afternoon sea breeze but it won’t penetrate enough inland to really affect the Perth temperature in the afternoon.”

Local swimming pools and metropolitan beaches are expected to be packed on Sunday as people seek relief from the heat.

The hottest January day ever recorded in Perth was 45.8C on January 31, 1991.

Source  :  www.news.com.au

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Extreme temperatures over the next two days are expected to bring Western Australia’s most severe bushfire conditions for the season, authorities say.

The Bureau of Meteorology forecasts “very hot” conditions for Monday with temperatures of about 40 degrees in Perth city, paired with east to north-east winds.

“Fire danger ratings of extreme to catastrophic are possible over most of the south-west land division as well as the south-west Goldfields on Tuesday,” said a Fire and Emergency Services Authority statement issued today.

“If you live in an area with a catastrophic fire danger rating you should put your survival first and leave early. That is hours before a fire starts.

“Under no circumstances will it be safe to stay and defend your home.”

FESA suggests that residents from at-risk areas spend Monday “at the beach, shopping in the closest major town or with family and friends away from bushland”.

Total fire bans are yet to be issued but may be later today.

Emergency service crews say they are well prepared for the fire threat.

On Tuesday, Perth is expected to reach 36 degrees, with the chance of a shower.

Temperatures are then forecast to plummet, with showers bringing a maximum of 23 degrees on Wednesday, warming to 26 on Thursday and heading back into the high 20s by next weekend.

Source  :  www.watoday.com.au

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A CHARTER plane with eight Australians heading to the Kokoda Track is missing having failed to reach its destination in Papua New Guinea.

The Twin Otter, twin engine plane was scheduled to arrive at the small village of Efogi at 9.55am (local time), before being due at Kokoda by 10.15am, then back at Port Moresby by 11am.

Authorities hold fears for the missing 13 people on board, including eight Australians heading to the Kokoda Track, and two crew members.

Source  :  www.news.com.au

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Firemen will work through the night to clear petrol from the scene of a massive explosion at a petrol station in the Perth suburb of Maddington.

A petrol tanker exploded at the Caltex station, starting a fire that destroyed parts of the vehicle, the roof of the forecourt and the shop front.article-fire-pic-420x0

A Fire and Emergency Services Authority spokesman told AAP the fire was brought quickly under control by firefighters.

“The focus is now on making the scene safe, which is a very important task,” the spokesman said.

“There was a fair bit of damage to the majority of the building.”

Petrol still left in the 40,000-litre tanker will be drained into another tanker, while specialists work to recover any water that may have been contaminated by the unleaded petrol.

About a quarter of the petrol in the tanker burnt in the fire.

Homes and businesses, including a suburban shopping centre, within a 500-metre radius of the station have been evacuated.

Residents will not be allowed to return until authorities are confident the area is safe and there is no petrol left to ignite.

That is likely to be sometime late on Friday night, the spokesman said.

No one was injured in the incident.

“It is great news. Fire authorities were called very quickly, and they got to the scene in a good time, meaning there were no injuries.

“There were people on the forecourt, in the shop, and of course the tanker driver,” the spokesman said.

The truck will not be removed until Saturday, while the investigation into why the fire started will continue for a few days.

www.news.ninemsn.com.au article

www.watoday.com.au Ben White photo

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