At least three families have been evacuated as an out-of-control bushfire threatens lives and homes just west of beloved tourist town Denmark.
The three confirmed households will spend Friday night at Denmark Recreation Centre on Brazier Street, an evacuation centre set up in response to the inferno raging through Shadforth and William Bay.
Denmark Shire president Ceinwen Gearon told The West Australian several others, including campers staying at Parry Beach had also been forced to evacuate.
“We’re unsure if there’s any there at this stage but anyone that was camping at Parry Beach has been informed to evacuate to Walpole Sports and Recreation Centre,” she said.
While the speed of the blaze has slowed since it ignited near the Bayview Rise and McLeod Road intersection in Shadforth about 9.30am, and the wind is expected to drop tonight, authorities have warned it is still uncontained and out of control.
And there are now fears that some homes may have already been lost.
A Department of Fire and Emergency Services spokesman said firefighters had yet to be able to confirm any losses, but that if conditions improved they would soon be able to begin a full-scale damage assessment..
A bushfire emergency warning has remained in place for most of the day for people bounded by Boat Harbour Road campsite, north along Boat Harbour Road to South Coast Highway, South Coast Highway north on Board Road through to Scotsdale Road, Walter Road, Lapko Road, Turner Road and Lights Road to the east, the coastline to the south and Kordabup Road to the west in parts of Shadforth and William Bay.
Directly under threat are homes and residents on Point Hillier Vista, McLeod Road and the east end of Limbourne Road, which are all in the path of the blaze.
“You are in danger and need to act immediately to survive. There is a threat to lives and homes,” a DFES alert states. “Do not wait and see, leaving at the last minute is deadly.”
As water bombers and 26 fire crews battle the blaze, residents in the warning zone are being urged to leave immediately.
“Residents in the emergency warning area, leave in a southerly direction towards South Coast Highway and then travel on the highway east towards Denmark,” the alert continues.
McLead Road between Osborne Road and South Coast Highway has been closed, as have Point Hiller Vista and South Coast Highway between Happy Valley Road and Sunrise Road.
William Bay National Park is also shut off to the public and people are being asked to leave the area.
A bushfire watch and act alert is also in place for people in an area east of the emergency warning area bounded by Scotsdale Road, Cussons Road and South Coast Highway in parts of Shadforth and Scotsdale, while a second bushfire watch and act alert is in place for people to the west of the emergency warning bounded by Scotsdale Road to the north, Parker Road to the west and the coastline in parts of Parryville, Kordabup and Kentdale.
There is a possible threat to lives and homes as a fire is approaching in the area and conditions are changing.