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With a little help from above: Rain douses fires across state, but danger remains

Rain is set to assist firefighters as blazes continue to burn across Queensland.

Nov 20, 2023, updated Nov 20, 2023
A building destroyed by bushfire is seen in the town of Wallangarra in Queensland, Wednesday, November 1, 2023.  Firefighting crews are still battling a ferocious blaze on the Southern Darling Downs after quick thinking saved a border town amid extreme conditions. (AAP Image/Darren England) NO ARCHIVING

A building destroyed by bushfire is seen in the town of Wallangarra in Queensland, Wednesday, November 1, 2023. Firefighting crews are still battling a ferocious blaze on the Southern Darling Downs after quick thinking saved a border town amid extreme conditions. (AAP Image/Darren England) NO ARCHIVING

Overnight showers helped crews trying to contain a fire on the Darling Downs west of Brisbane.

However Queensland Fire and Emergency Services say the blaze at The Pines near Millmerran is still not under control with 11 crews on site on Monday.

A “not safe to return” warning is current for residents in the area.

“The fire near Flamingo Road is still burning. It is travelling towards The Pines,” the QFES warning said.

“If you left the area, it is not safe to return. Firefighters are working to contain the fire.”

Overall there are 39 fires burning across Queensland on Monday.

But the Bureau of Meteorology believes assistance may be on the way for Darling Downs firefighters with showers forecast for the southeast for the rest of the week.

“Some proper English rain is coming,” a bureau spokesperson told AAP.

Patchy showers delivering up to 30mm in parts of the southeast including the Darling Downs are predicted.

“In the next couple of days they are bound to get some decent rain,” the bureau spokesperson said.

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“It’s difficult with fires because rainfall tends to be patchy and very often thunderstorms start fires rather than put them out with lightning strikes.

“But fingers crossed this time there will be enough to at least dampen the fires.”

Highest rainfalls to date have been recorded on the Western Downs with 90mm received in the last 24 hours at Ripple Downs, the bureau said.

Medpark Bridge on the Darling Downs has received 66mm while gauges on Queensland’s southern border have also been busy with Wyaga recording 53mm and Goondiwindi airport 48mm.

Severe thunderstorms may emerge inland from the southeast on the Western Downs moving further north to Wide Bay and Capricornia in central Queensland.

“As the week unfolds in some form or another we will be getting at least showers for the next week (in southeast),” the bureau spokesperson said.

“There is no clear change coming any time soon. We are stuck in a pattern now where we have a trough moving to and fro.

“The rain will ease and then it will come back – it won’t actually go away.”

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