Over 80 wildfires are burning their way across New South Wales, Australia, with 30 still thought to be uncontained. Fire crews are working hard to bring the blazes under control, but windy conditions are making it near impossible.
So far, the wildfires have burnt through more than 7000 acres of land but are not thought to pose a threat to lives or homes.
Wildfires are not uncommon in Australia and usually occur during the Spring season of October to March. The first August fire ban in almost a decade was issued across New South Wales on Wednesday 15th August 2018 due to the dry vegetation and lack of rain – thought to be the cause of the fire.
Tourists travelling to the area should be aware of the current situation but trips should not be affected. At the moment, flights are still operating in and out of surrounding airports but tourists are advised to check travel updates regularly.
If the smoke continues to worsen, travel may be affected. Although planes are able to fly through bushfire smoke the lack of visibility poses a huge safety risk and also, there is a risk of ash and debris carried through the air by high winds entering the plane’s engine.
Bushfires, hurricanes and other climatic conditions usually occur with little or no warning. Tourists travelling anywhere in the world, not just Australia, should ensure they are prepared by taking out a travel insurance policy that includes Force Majeure or Natural Disaster Cover. This will cover the cost of alternative travel or cancellation if your trip is disrupted by a climatic event, you can read more here.
As Australia enters their Spring, bushfires are expected to continue, especially as extreme temperatures are set to stay.