Australian firefighters were on Sunday preparing for some of the worst conditions in decades as several major blazes threatened to merge into a single dangerous fire front that could reach outlying districts of Sydney. On Saturday firefighters battled along lines of fire, while authorities warned of unparalleled risk and exposure for the Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury communities, to the west and north of Sydney. Firefighters are forced to abandon their truck when they become surrounded by bushfires in Sydney's western suburbs. There are now two emergency warnings in place in New South Wales – the highest alert level for bushfires.

The emergency is entering its seventh day, with 59 fires burning across the state – more than 18 of which are uncontained. The Rural Fire Service had warned since the weekend about the potential devastation today's weather could cause, but Fire Service commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said earlier today the revised forecast was even more worrying, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.
Emergency Services Minister Mike Gallacher has warned residents in the Blue Mountains to evacuate.
Police are warning motorists fines of up to AU$5,500 can be issued for throwing a cigarette from a vehicle.

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