UPDATE 2:50 PM | FIREFIGHTERS are working to contain and extinguish a bushfire burning close to homes and shops near the M1 at Nerang.
Four Rural Fire Service crews remain at the scene, monitoring the blaze which quickly spread under high risk fire conditions through around 500m of bushland along Gilston Road.
Thanks to the quick response of firefighters, the blaze is now under control but continues to burn close to a cluster of shops, including My Centre Nerang, the Nerang Mall and a BP service station.
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It’s understood flames reached reached the back of homes at the River Springs Country Club.
Crews have spent the last hour carrying out backburning operations to protect property in the area.
It’s understood crews will now let the fire burn through the bushland under controlled conditions to reduce the risk of future fires.
The blaze is produce thick smoke in the area which is being fanned across parts of the M1.
Motorists are being urged to exercise caution and drive to suit the conditions.
FIRST at 1:20 PM | FIREFIGHTERS are on the scene of a fire burning in bushland near the M1 at Nerang.
The blaze broke out along Gilston Road, in an area of bushland across the road from a shopping centre and a BP service station, shortly before 12.30pm.
The Rural Fire Service (RFS) is warning smoke may affect residents and motorists in the area.
Thick smoke is being fanned across the Pacific Motorway, however, there is no threat to property.
The tower of smoke can be seen billowing into the air from as far away as The Star in Broadbeach.
Five RFS trucks were at the scene, working to contain the blaze at 1.30pm.
Residents in the area are urged to close their doors and windows and those suffering from respiratory conditions should keep their medication close by.
Motorists should use caution and drive to conditions.
Meanwhile, 18 RFS trucks remain on the scene of a bushfire burning in the hinterland at Wongawallen, around eight kilometres west of Upper Coomera.
Crews spent the night monitoring the blaze and blackening out bushland between the fire front and around 100 homes scattered throughout the area.
At this time, the fire is under control and no properties are not under direct threat.
The fire continues to burn in the area of Lanes Road, Elevation Drive and Upper Ormeau Road (also known as Howard Creek Place).
Crews will spend the afternoon strengthening containment lines and blackening out bush.
The RFS advises people in the area will be affected by smoke, which will reduce visibility and air quality.
FIRE PERMITS CANCELLED
ALL fire permits have been cancelled until further notice in parts of the southeast, including on the Gold coast, as the bushfire risk continues to climb.
Local government areas affected include Brisbane, Moreton Bay, Redland City, Ipswich, Scenic Rim, Somerset, Logan and the Gold Coast.
Rural Fire Service (RFS) Acting Director of Rural Operations Chief Superintendent James Haig urged residents to take the current conditions seriously, with high to very high fire danger impacting much of the south-east corner.
“All current permits have been cancelled and no new ones will be issued until further notice,” Mr Haig said.
“People need to be vigilant in these conditions as there is a real risk of bushfires igniting and spreading quickly.
“Such conditions mean even permitted fires would be difficult to control and pose a danger to communities.
“Landholders need to be thinking of other methods of mitigation to protect their property as now is not the time to be conducting hazard reduction burns.”
Mr Haig said fires under two metres in any direction were still permitted, as was the use of power tools, however residents needed to be cautious.
“Residents needing to use power tools should do so with extreme care and ensure adequate equipment is available to extinguish any fire that may start,” he said.
“This may include having a person available to watch out for any ignitions that occur.”
Mr Haig encouraged residents to take steps now to protect their property from bushfire.
“While permits to burn have been cancelled, there are other actions residents can take to prepare their properties,” he said.
“Clear leaves from gutters, remove debris and flammable materials from around the home and have a Bushfire Survival Plan, which can be downloaded as a step-by-step guide from the RFS website.”
For more information, contact your local fire warden, call 1300 369 003 or visit www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au.
You can stay up-to-date with the latest warnings and advice messages by visiting the Rural Fire Service (RFS) website at www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au/map
For bushfire preparation tips, visit the RFS website: www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au/BushFire_Safety
For information about road closures, call 13 19 40 or visit www.qldtraffic.qld.gov.au