High winds that could start a bushfire caused Australia on Wednesday to urge thousands of people to leave their homes in the provincial capital, Perth, making a lockdown difficult after the state discovered its first coronavirus infection in 10 months.
The fire in Western Australia has destroyed more than 9,000 hectares and 71 houses, according to the authorities, to commemorate flames that destroyed millions of hectares of habitat in the east of the country a year ago.
When firefighters battled a fire in steep, inhospitable terrain, authorities urged residents of Bullsbrook, a suburb of 6,600 in Australia’s fourth largest city, to ignore an order at home and leave immediately as soon as hot, dry weather came up .
“We know how quickly things can go bad,” said Prime Minister Mark McGowan at a press conference, adding that one of his personal acquaintances has lost his home.
“You are expecting extremely high winds. So we say, if you can go, please go now. Please act to save your life.”
At the same time, the city’s 2 million residents are locked up for five days until Friday after a hotel quarantine worker tested positive for the highly contagious variant of the virus, first discovered in the UK.
The rules require them to stay at home except for essential work, health care, grocery shopping, or exercise, while visits to hospitals and nursing homes are prohibited.
“It is important that everyone has a plan. If emergency services personnel ask you to follow this plan, it will go beyond any lockdown orders,” said David Littleproud, the emergency management minister, to the Australian Broadcasting Corp.
“There shouldn’t be any confusion about that.”
No deaths were reported from the fires, the origin of which is still unknown.
(This story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)