Sydney bushfire still out of control and may have been deliberately lit

Huge smoke clouds rise above homes in Moorebank. Source Instagram  msclaire76

"Residents in the area of Sandy Point and Alfords Point should continue to monitor the conditions as they could change quickly", the RFS said in an alert at 6am.

The Holsworthy fire - which may have been deliberately lit - had been downgraded to a "watch-and-act" alert earlier on Sunday morning but RFS Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons has warned "the risk remained very real".

Conditions eased late last night, but predicted high winds on Monday afternoon could cause trouble for hundreds of firefighters still attempting to slow its spread on the ground. "There were reported gusts of about 60 kilometres an hour so they'll be reduced", he said yesterday.

Some remembered awful bushfires in the 1990s when homes were destroyed, and were determined to stay and extinguish embers or spot fires as they broke out. Residents in these areas should shelter in place.

More than 500 firefighters from the Rural Fire Service, Fire & Rescue NSW and the Australian Defence Force attempted to contain the blaze over the weekend with help from volunteers and 11 water-bombing helicopters.

"We have had reports of impact on properties in west Menai and Barden Ridge but our crews at the moment are exclusively focused on fighting the fire, " Allan said Sunday evening.

"Most of those houses that burnt down were not from the fire front, it was from a spot fire or from a burning ember catching on fire on somebody's roof."

Wind speeds are expected to be similar today.

About 250 firefighters are still working to halt the fire while a fleet of 15 aircraft will water-bomb the "dynamic" firefront, Mr Fitzsimmons said.

"It is absolutely miraculous that we have not lost any lives and virtually no property and this is because of the hard work and dedication and heroism of our fire services", the state's acting Emergency Services Minister Mark Speakman told reporters Monday.

"As we say all the time, no one tolerates this in the community".

Reports say the unseasonably hot weather of the last few weeks is partly to blame, though police are also investigating what started the blaze and are appealing for witnesses.



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