Jan 19, 2020

Rain hits Australia's fire-ravaged states, but bushfires still burn

A downpour in Sydney, where a severe thunderstorm warning has been issued for some parts as the city experiences its wettest weekend in four months, but bushfires continue to burn. Photo: Jenny Evans/Getty Images

Heavy rain has triggered flash floods in the fire-ravaged Australian state of Queensland, SBS News reports. New South Wales also got a soak and further rainfall and thunderstorms were expected. But bushfires continued to burn over the weekend.

The state of play: There were over "50 reports of flooded roads across Queensland's southeast," per SBS, which notes flooded theme parks were forced to close. Heavy rainfall and thunderstorms were forecast for Victoria, where 15 fires were still burning, according to the Guardian. In NSW, over 1,300 firefighters were tackling flames across "69 firegrounds," the state's Rural Fire Service said, with 19 fires still not contained.

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In photos: Australia endures floods, dust storms and brown rain as fires rage

Workers clean a court after overnight rain on day four of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne Thursday morning local time. Photo: William West/AFP via Getty Images

Soaring temperatures in the Australian state of New South Wales of over 100°F have triggered fresh bushfires, while dust has produced brown rain in Victoria.

What's happening: Dust storms have been pummeling parts of southeast Australia for days. A massive bushfire in the Australian Capital Territory impacted flights at Canberra Airport, where hail the size of golf balls struck earlier in the week. The storms come days after floods hit southeast Queensland, which has also been impacted by the fires. Here's what's been happening, in photos.

See photosArrowUpdated Jan 23, 2020

Australia's deadly fires: What you need to know

The Australian flag flies under red skies from fires on Jan. 4 in Bruthen, Victoria. Photos: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

The Orroral Valley fire has burned through nearly 25% of the district that's home to Australia's capital, News.com.au reports, after ACT Emergency Controller Georgeina Whelan said the fire was rapidly growing into the south east on Saturday.

The latest: The Orroral fire grew from 81,544 acres to at least 129,073 acres on Saturday, based on Whelan's initial statement, and ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr's following estimate. Whelan said the Orroral fire is expected to move "well into" New South Wales, which creates potential for it to reach and merge with other bushfires in the area.

113 animal species need urgent help after Australia's bushfires

Humane Society specialists check an injured Koala rescued from South Australia's Kangaroo Island fires on Jan. 15. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP via Getty Images

113 animal species need an "emergency intervention" to help support their recovery after they lost at least 30% of their habitat to Australia's bushfires — and many lost substantially more than that.

Details: That's according to a report released by Australia's Environment Department, which consulted a panel of experts to identify species in need of urgent help — including the koala.