Residents near Ballarat are being warned that they are in danger from a nearby out-of-control bushfire.
A warning from Vic Emergency on Thursday afternoon reported a blaze near the intersection of Devonshire and Nashs roads at Buninyong, south of ballarat.
“The safest option is to take shelter indoors immediately. It is too late to leave, leaving now would be deadly,” the online warning reads.
The Country Fire Authority was first alerted at 2.35pm.
The “scrub and grass fire” appears to be burning south through bushland, away from suburbia.
BUSHFIRE ALERT: An emergency warning has been issued for a bushfire near Ballarat, in Victoria’s west. #9News
— Nine News Melbourne (@9NewsMelb) December 6, 2018
A warning was issued for residents in Durham Lead and Scotsburn, who are urged to leave their properties as a precaution.
Incident controller Gavin Hope told ABC radio the fire was 20 hectares in size and moving through grassland, “giving us some grief” in forest areas.
At least 50 firefighters are tackling the blaze with four aircraft joining the battle and bulldozers are being used to make firebreaks, he noted.
Breaking: out-of-control bushfire south of Ballarat. Emergency Warning in place for Brennans Rd and Pryors Rd, Platts Rd, Buninyong. Bushfire has crossed Scotts Lane and is heading in a southerly direction @9NewsMelb #vicfires pic.twitter.com/RnNBM9dadP
— Tom Kelly (@tpwkelly) December 6, 2018
A woman at Hillview Lodge Buninyong, north of the blaze, told AAP they were watching the smoke of the fire.
“We can see these huge plumes of smoke go from white to grey to black,” she said by phone.
The temperature at Ballarat on Thursday reached 33C by mid-afternoon.