Bushfire emergency remains for Western Australia


A bushfire emergency remains in place for parts of Western Australia, with a huge blaze burning out of control.

The fire has already claimed nearly 70,000 hectares of land and 121 homes in Yarloop, including one belonging to a New Zealander. It's now closing in on more towns.

The road to recovery for Yarloop will be long, slow and heartbreaking. The first drive through the small historic town reveals the devastation.

Everything, everywhere, is destroyed – 121 homes reduced to ash, including Kiwi Ada Farmer's.

"Just about everything's gone in Yarloop, even our home and my neighbours and most of our communities. It's all gone," says Ms Farmer.

"All the heritage houses are gone. I just don't know what's going to happen. Yeah, it's hard," says resident David Renshaw.

Mr Renshaw stayed to defend his home.

"It was deafening, red intense heat; it was really hard to breathe."

They faced flames towering up to 50 metres tall. 

More than 250 firefighters are now trying to contain the out-of-control blaze in the most extreme conditions.

Kiwi firefighters are also on their way, but already nearly 70,000 hectares of land have been destroyed.

"We basically just got ourselves together and got off the property," says Paul Beugelaar.

Three people who were missing have now been accounted for, and no one has been seriously injured.

The Insurance Council of Australia has declared the bushfires a catastrophe.

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