Smoke will blanket parts of Victoria for days as bushfires burn in the state’s southeast.
An air quality warning has been issued for the northeast and central districts, East, South and West Gippsland, north-central, and the northern country into Friday.
“You will see or smell smoke across parts of Victoria. Smoke is a result of fires in southeast Victoria. It may be smoky or hazy in your area,” the alert states.
Yet the southwest district, the Mallee and Wimmera are unlikely to see smoke.
Light winds may move the smoke into Melbourne’s eastern suburbs with the smoke hanging around until Sunday in the area, and in the La Trobe Valley, the alert states.
Firefighters are still battling Victoria’s highest-risk bushfire, east of Melbourne, at the Bunyip State Park which has burnt more than 15,000
Back-burning is expected to take place across the state over the coming days to strengthen containment lines, a joint statement from fire agencies states.
The temperature is set to hit 25C on Friday in both Melbourne and Bunyip.
Up to 18 fires had been burning in Victoria on Thursday, less than half the number recorded earlier in the week.
Nine homes were destroyed by the Bunyip fire and another two were lost in the Yinnar blaze in central Gippsland, with at least another 23 buildings damaged or razed.
It’s estimated that a combined total of up to 70,000 hectares of land has been burned statewide since last week.