Look back: Bushfire emergency threatens NSW

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Published on Sep 10, 2013

About 800 firefighters were deployed to battle fires that destroyed homes and property in Sydney’s west. Read more here: http://bit.ly/1aZKFqD

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The Guardian home

Investigation launched into causes of four fires that burned out of control on Tuesday west of Sydney

A firefighter gives instructions near a bushfire

A firefighter gives instructions near a bushfire at the Windsor Downs Nature Reserve, near Sydney Photograph: Daniel Munoz/Reuters

Three of the four major bushfires in Sydney’s west have been brought under control with weather conditions easing on Wednesday, as an investigation was launched into what caused the blazes.

Winds reached 50km/h on Tuesday while temperatures were over 30 degrees in parts of Sydney as bushfires which destroyed one house and injured firefighters burnt out of control in western Sydney and in the Blue Mountains.

The fires reached emergency status but were downgraded to “watch and act” on Tuesday morning and to “advice” on Wednesday morning as winds eased and temperatures dropped by about ten degrees.

The firefighters’ union used the emergency to attack budget cuts by the NSW state government saying five fire stations were closed because of budget cuts as the bushfires burnt.

Bushfires in Winmalee, Castlereagh and Marsden Park are burning within containments line but on Wednesday morning a bushfire in Richmond was still burning outside of control lines, according to a spokeswoman for the Rural Fire Service.

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