The outlook was already bad, with above-normal fire potential for most of the east coast.

Now, the areas considered at greater threat have expanded into northern Victoria, northern Queensland and further along the Tasmanian coast.

Dr Richard Thornton, chief executive of the Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre (BNHCRC), said the update reinforced its outlook from August.

“This is coming on top of what we now have seen, which is a very early start to the fire season and a really severe start across large parts of NSW, Queensland and, more recently, over the weekend in WA,” he said.

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