The alert level for two major bushfires in Western Australia has been downgraded as the threat to lives and homes has eased, but three emergencies remain.
An emergency warning for parts of Myrup, east of Esperance in the state’s south, has been reduced to a watch and act because the spread of the blaze has slowed.
The fire threatened more than a dozen streets earlier on Sunday after it broke through containment lines and still poses a possible risk to lives and homes as conditions are changing.
Residents in an area bounded by Hills Road, Lake Road and Quarry Road are allowed to return to their properties but may need to leave again if the slow-moving fire worsens.
Another emergency warning that was issued for the western part of Ellenbrook, on Perth’s northeastern fringe, has also been reduced to a watch and act.
The fire was directly threatening homes on Charlotte’s Vista, which faces bushland, and is now being showered in embers.
The Department of Fire and Emergency Services says spot fires are starting up to 500 metres ahead of the blaze, with flames higher than rooftops.
Also north of Perth, emergency warnings remain in place for the Julimar State Forest in the Toodyay Shire, Bindoon in the Shire of Chittering – where the fire has jumped Great Northern Highway – and Brand Highway in North Muchea.
Emergency evacuation centres have been set up at town halls in Bindoon and Toodyay.
In North Muchea, the out-of-control and unpredictable bushfire is moving fast.
Last week, a local farmer and three tourists were killed in a bushfire north of Esperance.