Yesterday a grass fire started on Sydney's South western fringe and took off so quickly that there was no time for evacuation.
I saw the thick smoke on the horizon and knew it was not far away but guessed it was a hazard reduction operation.
When Liam messaged from work to say his crew was down three people due to fires I started to pay a bit more attention. When he was evacuated I paid a little more.
A change in wind direction over night reduced the threat and filled our house with smoke.
This morning the fire was still out of control and residents close to it were warned to be ready to leave.
Liam went back to work at 1pm today but coincidentally the threat level was raised at that time and the shopping centre was in lockdown when he arrived. The supermarket where he works is now pretty much on the fire front and my sister, one more suburb across has made the decision to leave as embers fly into the area.
Five hundred fire fighters are working hard but strong winds are making conditions volatile in every sense.
I think all of Sydney is on tenterhooks right now........