People in Happy Valley on Fraser Island were told to leave immediately on Sunday evening, with a forest fire expected to reach the township.
The wildfire warning was brought to the emergency level late on Sunday, and Queensland fire and emergency services advised that leaving immediately was the safest option, as it could quickly become too dangerous to drive.
“Anyone near Happy Valley Municipality should leave the area towards Eastern Beach and head south to Eurong Resort,” the warning said.
At 4:15 pm Sunday, a major fire headed southeast towards the township. It was expected to reach the area around 8 p.m. and have a significant impact.
“Conditions are now very dangerous and firefighters will soon be unable to prevent the fire from spreading further,” the warning said.
“The fire can threaten all lives that come directly in its path. Firefighters may not be able to protect your property. You can’t expect a firefighter at your door: act now. “
Power, water and cell phone service can be lost and road conditions can get very dangerous until Sunday evening. The warning said those in the area would be affected by smoke, which would reduce visibility and air quality.
The wildfires were sparked by an illegal campfire on Oct. 14 and destroyed at least 82,500 acres of the national park.
The fire continues to burn on several fronts on the east and west sides of the island.
About 100 specialized firefighters are on site.
They are supported by fixed wing bombers, helicopter attack bombers, aerial attack platforms, an aerial observation platform, a large antenna tanker and a LAT main plane.
Fraser Island is located approximately 250 km north of Brisbane, 123 km long and covers 181,851 hectares.