UK & World News
Australia: Wildfires Rage In New South Wales
More than 100 wildfires are raging in Australia's most populous state, New South Wales, with about 18 of them reported to be out of control.
Up to 30 properties are believed to have been destroyed in the Blue Mountains town of Springwood, although the total number is expected to rise.
No deaths or injuries have been reported so far.
Smoke from the fires is also hanging eerily over the Sydney skyline, casting an orange haze.
The fires have been caused by unseasonably hot temperatures reaching 35C, as well as strong winds which have helped spread the flames.
State premier Barry O'Farrell said: "We are unclear yet as to how many properties have been lost but it's suspected that by the time we finish counting, it'll at least be in the hundreds."
A spokesman for the New South Wales Rural Fire Service said the fires were the most serious wildfire emergency in years.
In February 2009, wildfires, which are common in Australia in the warmer months, killed 173 people and destroyed more than 2,000 homes in Victoria state.