Heat, wind and danger rise

6PM UPDATE: FRIDAY is a day of total fire ban in the North East and Riverina, with severe fire conditions forecast across the region.

FRIDAY is a day of total fire ban in the North East and Riverina, with severe fire conditions expected across the region.

Yarrawonga reached 40 degrees today and most of the region was higher than 38.

But tomorrow will be hotter and windy, with a northeasterly wind forecast to reach 50km/h before shifting during that day.

Storms are expected from midday before a late change that will see temperatures drop from a maximum of 40 degrees to as low as 18 overnight.

NSW SEVERE FIRE DANGER AREAS (Southern Riverina, Eastern Riverina, Southern Slopes): Albury, Greater Hume, Corowa, Urana, Murray, Deniliquin, Lockhart, Jerilderie, Berrigan, Junee,  Coolamon, Conargo, Wakool, Wagga Wagga. Tumbarumba, Boorowa, Cootamundra, Gundagai, Harden, Tumut, Young.

VICTORIAN VERY HIGH DANGER AREAS: North East, Northern Country and East Gippsland.

Firefighters spent last night mopping up a bushfire between Myrtleford and Bright in preparation for predicted strong winds and high temperatures today and tomorrow.

Operations officer at CFA District 24, Adrian Gutsche, said if any fires started today, they would need to be secured before the wind picks up tomorrow.

“If you look at Friday’s conditions, we’re expected to get north-westerly winds, temperatures of 37, possible thunder storms with lighting,” he said.

“We’ll have winds of 35km/h, gusting to 55km/h.

“It is enough for us to get into readiness mode.”

Authorities are investigating the cause of a fire that broke out on property near Cartwrights Lane, Rosewhite at 3.45pm yesterday.

It went on to burn four hectares of bushland, with a helicopter, bulldozer and CFA and DSE tankers brought in to douse the fire.

Mr Gutsche said no homes or property came under threat, but it could have been a more serious situation if the weather had been more conducive to fire.

With students on holidays, Mr Gutsche said it was pivotal parents knew where their children were and that children knew what to do in the event of a fire.

“If you’re deciding what to do at the last minute as smoke is coming across the horizon or fire comes across your property, it is probably too late,” Mr Gutsche said.

“You need to know whether you’re going to go to a safe place or leave early.

“It should be written down and rehearsed.”

He said over the years he had seen people in rural cities or on the edges of country towns become complacent, and not having adequate fire plans.

“But people still need to be aware of their surroundings,” he said.

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