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ANNOUNCER: This is Nine News with Amelia Adams. Good morning. We begin with the bushfire emergency across the country. NSW is facing what is expected to be one of the hottest days on record. More than 100 blazes are now burning across the state, with catastrophic fire conditions declared in the Illawarra, Shoalhaven and Southern Ranges regions. Nine's Matthew Snelson begins our coverage from the Illawarra. Good morning. What is the bushfire situation on the south coast right now?Good morning, Amelia. Those catastrophic conditions that they have warned about are really starting to kick in now. Wind gusts are over 30km/h. The temperature has moved above 36 degrees. The bush here is dry. The good news at the moment is that that fire that was burning very fiercely last night, west of Wandandy, in the south coast town, has been contained. It is not far from where we are now. It was a hell of a fight by firefights to bring it under control, working through the night, 25 crews in bushland. It was only accessible by fire trails and by 4-wheel drive. After a very fierce fight it was brought under control this morning. Now, the fire burned through about 6 hectares before the crews got the upper hand this morning. They are continuing to monitor it just in case the blaze does break containment lines. The RFS said this morning it could be disastrous, of course, not far from here, at Sussex Inlet, in 2001, a blaze raced towards homes. It is a danger, very fresh in the minds of both RFS and the residents in this area. A very, very hazardous condition this morning. There's been plenty of warning but with the conditions you are describing, how prepared are residents and fire crews? Firefighters say think ear very prepared. There is a fire control centre up the road from here, from the blaze that they battled last night. There are 3f local brigades and two strike teams ready to go. There are water-bombing aircraft, some of which were used last night as well. One of those huge air cranes has been set up at HMAS Albatross. We heard from the RFS not long ago.The conditions at the moment that we predicted going into the catastrophic level, therefore we are looking at above 40-degree temperatures, low humidity, at 11%, and high winds. Our resources lowly are about 36 local brigades, on heightened awareness and availability. We have two strike teams available to the Shoalhaven district, one based in Nowra and another in Bateman's Bay. Now, obviously, the residents in the areas that are fire-prone have been warned to get out. But there are so many tourists right along the south coast. There are obvious fears that the members of the jury might not have got through as clearly there. The RFS is going to go through the camping grounds and caravan parks, and just make sure that that members of the jury is very clear about how dangerous the situation is today. Very hazardous conditions, a busy day for firefighters. Certainly, residents right along this area, the tourists today, are hoping for the best, Amelia.Thanks for the update. We are expecting to hear from the RFS commissioner later in the bulletin, who will have the latest information for us. Well, those extreme temperatures and dry conditions have emergency crews on high alert right across NSW. After several close calls, there are fears of more bushfires, putting properties and lives at risk. Jayne Azzopardi is in Wagga Wagga. Bring us up to date on the conditions and the fire threat. As you can see, it is extremely windy here, Amelia. I can tell you it was hot, and 30 degrees at midnight last night, heating up throughout the morning. It is in the mid-30s. You might be able to see the blackened landscape, a fire that everyone was worried about yesterday. They managed to get it under control. They have been doing what they call the mopping-up and blacking-out all morning, trying to get the embers suffocated before the conditions arrive. I'm joined by Matt Burgess and Lesley Lemon from the local RFS. How worried are you today?Extremely worried. Weather can change at the drop of a hat. That is the issue - that is what everybody is concerned about. We were hearing reports this morning that this fire behind us had broken containment lines. What can you tell us about that?They thought it had. But apparently it was just a tree, sort of down, close to a double paddock, which they brought under control.What are they planning to do with the neighbouring properties?I do believe that they may be dropping retarded on that, because there's about five or six properties that are in the way of the wind at the moment. So they're trying to do that.What sort of resources do you have on the scene and how are you looking after the fire crews out there?Well, anything that the crews need, before they go on to the fire ground and as they come off - we will feed them, make sure they have water, ice for their eskys on trucks. Fuel. We have fuel stumps and drops here, both unleaded for the small quick fill pumps, and diesel for the trucks. Yeah, shade. And first aid and ambulance on scene to administer first aid if needed - which we hope it is not.We have seen a couple of helicopters, water-bombing helicopters in the air today, obviously taking no chances.No! Not at all - not in these conditions.Even though it looks black, and to a lay person it might look like the fire is out, you are worried about it?Yes, at this stage with these conditions, yes. Anything could happen. There you go, Amelia. Thousands of - well, dozens of fire grounds like this around NSW, and they are keeping a close eye on it today. They do a great job, don't they? And the ACT for a moment - Canberra is in for extreme temperatures, hotter than NSW. What is the situation there? Yeah, well, there is a total fire ban in the ACT today as well as NSW. Canberra is going to reach temperatures of around 38 degrees, and they are also experiencing the really strong winds. The horrific news for residents there is they have been told that conditions today are as bad as the conditions on 18 January 2003 - when they had those devastating bushfires that everyone remembers that just tore through Canberra, hundreds of homes were destroyed, and, sadly, four people lost their lives. Look, that is very fresh in the minds of Canberrans today. There are a number of fires burning oorbd the ACT, one at Yarrabin, near Cooma, impacting properties. People have been told that it is too late to leave properties. Fire crews are trying to contain that blaze. There is a fire under control to the north of Canberra, at Gunning. Yesterday, that was a worry. A firefighter there, a man in his early 30s, actually got severe burns to his hands and feet when the fire truck was over-run by the flames. He is now in Concorde Hospital at the specialist burns unit there in Sydney, recovering. Look, you can smell it in the air here, you can feel it. The dryness of the heat, that wind that is whipping through - it really is a very eery feeling for everyone on the ground out here, Amelia.A very, very anxious time for everyone there. Jayne, thank you. Well, let's go to Victoria now, where the fire danger is also high although not catastrophic, like in NSW. The main concern is a blaze in the south-west of the state, which is already burning out more than 7,000 hectares of bushland. Well, I'm outside Drikdrik near Dartmoor, south-west Victoria, the centre of this emergency for the past 12 to 15 years or so. We saw scenes change dramatically yesterday afternoon when the wind whipped up far quicker than anticipated. Ash and embers were raining down on this area late yesterday afternoon. Residents were told to take immediate cover from this bushfire. Many of them here, and in Dartmoor fled the area, others decided to stay and defend their homes. Let's listen to some of those inside Drikdrik last night. We have been going around hosing down the house, and up on the roof. We have been keeping things damp on the west and south side.The wind is changing every few minutes, you know? A period ago, it was chopping and changing all the time. There is nothing you can do but keep monitoring it. If it looks like it is heading your way, we have the cars ready, and we could not be more prepared.There are a number of strike teams on their way here at the moment from SA and from Geelong, trying to help out the 800 firefighters who are on the ground here as we speak. They have had a huge night here, jack burning in the area and building containment lines. The fear today is that the two wind changes - this morning and this afternoon - will whip the fire up and force it to jump those containment lines. Now, the fire is still burning out of control. It is now burning 7,000 hectares, and we are told that today it has the potential to double in size. Now to the fires in Tasmania, where the bushfire emergency is in its fifth day. A man is facing charges over a blaze north-west of Hobart. He's accused of leaving a campfire unattended, causing the fire at Lake Repulse. Nine's Darren Curtis has the latest. Tasmania also has a total fire ban in place. There are 40 separate fires burning across the state at the moment. Today, they are expecting a significant wind change. Winds of up to 40km/h to 70km/h. They turned some of these fires in different directions into unburned areas. They are receiving support from interstate - WA, SA and even New Zealand firefighters are starting to arrive here today to give them some jack-up and relief. They have been working -- backup. They are reopening significant roads, allowing people who have been trapped in Port Arthur and Nueena to head back to Hobart. The convoys are long and slow but they are moving through. The aid is arriving in towns like Dunalley. Locals have been unpacking trucks, trailers and all sorts of equipment brought down to them. Some of the basic necessities of life, toiletries, for example, that people have needed to help their lives stay on track.We have a lot of unexpected deliveries and it ha 9 been amazing - we have had so much come in. Yeah, has just been overflowing, a lot of food, clothing coming in. We have had to bring in this marquee and set up so that we have enough space for food. Insurance assessors are due in town today to start the process of looking at the propertys that have been damaged throughout Dunalley and the surrounding regions. We are expecting a team from the Bushfire Research Organisation, looking at the path of the fire, to see if they can create any ideas that may help protect communities into the future. The Red Cross has set up an appeal to help victims of

appeal to help victims of the disaster.

Alright, let's get the rest of the day's news. Police in Queensland are hunting a driver who ran over a Detective in Ipswich last night. The officer was struck at an intersection just before 7pm, while trying to pull over the man's car, following an earlier incident. He was taken to hospital with cuts and bruises and an injured hip. It is understood the offender was alone in the car at the time. A man is in hospital with a suspected shoulder injury after crashing his motorbike during a police pursuit, which crossed the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Officers allege the motorcyclist had been speeding and failed to stop, trying to evade them. During the pursuit, the rider hit a median strip and fell off his bike. Police say the bike was unregister and uninsured. A burglar got more than he bargained for when he trieded robbing a hotel in Melbourne this morning. Police were called to the hotel at Footscray around 1 o'clock, where the crook tried to escape officers by diving through a window. He ran along the roof and jumped into a beer garden before being nabbed by officers. A cherrypicker had to be brought in to bring him down. The 49-year-old suffered some injuries, and is no doubt nursing a wounded ego. Let's have a quick look at the weather for you around the country today:

weather for you around the country
today:

Next up - we will have all the latest information on the bushfire situation, the Rural Fire Service commissioner joins us live for an update on fire conditions in NSW. Also, how a military training exercise sparked an emergency in Sydney. And the huge blaze that tore through a shopping mall in This program is not captioned. Welcome back to Nine's Morning News Hour, let's get an update on the fire situation. Currently, there are 103 fires burge across NSW. 10 of those are still out of control and approximately 10 more are being brought under control. An emergency warning has been issued for residents at Yarrabin, near Cooma. Residents have been told to take shelter. It is

shelter. It is too late to leave. In Victoria, nine fires are currently burning. Of the most concern is at Drik Drik, and the fire has combined with another blaze. It has burnt out more than 7,000 hectares of bushland. There are also bushfires burning across Tasmania and extreme temperatures, up to 48 degrees expected in the ACT. For the latest on the situation in NSW, we're joined by RFS Commissioner situation in NSW, we're joined by
RFS Commissioner Shane Fitzimmons. Commissioner, thank you for joining us. Just bring us up to speed on the fire crisis across the state. Look, you covered the fire of most concern there. Down in the Cooma- mononair row, the fire to the east of Cooma, it extended further east. The incident controller to for that region is already reporting extreme fire behaviour with spotting distances already exceeding more than a kilometre. It is burning very aggressive and heading in an easterly direction. We have a number of other fires breaching containment that we saw with fires of yesterday. New fires are occurring right across different parts of the geography, down in the Bega area, nor Brogo. Similarly, a new far which has started there. Warnings are about to be issued to communities east of Brogo, and through the central west, Bland, Wagga Wagga and other loxs, there is plenty of fire activities in light of these extraordinary conditions developing. We are seeing severe weather conditions already being experienced across much of the southern areas of NSW. That is a huge area, Commissioner, for the RFS to be dealing with. How are the crews coping?Look, we have literally thousands of firefighters on stand-by today. In addition to those currently deployed across the firefighting efforts, across all those different fire grounds, we have got 21 strike teams between fire and rescue NSW and, of course, the RFS volunteers. They are strategically locked right across the geography. We have the colleagues interstate in the ACT and the colleagues on the other side of the border at the ready if we need to use them. They are supported by under 100 aircraft, either deployed or on stand-by to assist in firefighting efforts. Commissioner, finally, for those residents in the danger zones you have spoken about, there is that point where you either pack up and go or you stay in your home and shelter. What should people do at this stage when those fires are beginning to jump containment lines?As we have always said - it is all about your circumstances and following your survival plan. Everyone's circumstance is different. Under these sorts of conditions, these fires will spread and develop so quickly that often there is time for no warning or little warning. If you are not physically, emotionally or psychologically prepared to actively defend your home, you should be leaving early, not waiting for fire to be bearing down on you at the backdoor. Certainly, in these catastrophic areas that we talked about - through the Shoalhaven, Illawarra and Southern Ranges - leaving early is your safest option under those catastrophic conditions.It is a massive day for you - we appreciate your time this morning.You are welcome.He will be holding a press conference with the NSW Police Minister Michael Gallagher in a short time. Meantime, there are a number of health warnings in place across the country, due to the severe heat wave. It is recommended that we drink plenty of water throughout the day. Don't engage in strenuous

throughout the day.
Don't engage in strenuous exercise. Stay out of direct sunlight. If you can, find a neighbourhood safe place or air-conditioned area, preventably, check on elderly residents, who are at most risk in this heat. Do not leave children or pets unattended in cars.

this heat. Do not leave children or
pets unattended in cars. We have some breaking news now out of Melbourne. Heavily armed police are surrounding a house at Croydon in the city's east, after an armed robbery this morning. The critical incident response team, special operations group, the dog squad and Air wing are searching for a man believed to be armed. One man has already been arrested after an armed hold-up at a Croydon gaming venue. Several roads in the area are blocked at the moment, and we will bring you more information as it comes into the newsroom. It's claimed a bungled military training exercise sparked a major bomb scare at one of Australia's main airports last year. Fake bombs were discovered in the glove box of a rental car at Sydney's domestic terminal last July with AFP experts called in to examine the devices. Fair fax reports the car had been hired by the Defence Police Training Centre at Holsworthy Barracks for six and a half weeks. An officer from the centre says the devices which posed no threat to public safety were used in training exercises but were not discovered by students. An independent inquiry into the incident is now underway. Shoppers have fled a 5-storey mall in north-east China after an enormous blaze ripped through the building. The inferno swept through an area measuring more than 100,000 square feet in around 3.5 hours. No-one was hurt, and while it is unclear how the blaze began, firefighters believe it may have been started by a welding accident. Still ahead in Nine's Morning News - a court hearing begins into the Colorado movie shooting. Our US bureau chief Robert Penfold joins us live with the details. More protests in New Delhi, as five men face court charged with rape and murder. And the desperate search for an Italian designer off the coast of Venezuela.

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We've got full coverage of the bushfire situation for you this morning. Let's have a look at the latest

morning. Let's have a look at the
latest information. Emergency warning has been issued for residents at Yarrabin for a fire affecting homes. Residents have been told to take shelter. It is now too late and daipbgsz to leave. That is one of 103 fires burning across the state. 10 are not under control. 10 others are now being brought under control. In Victoria, meantime, a fire at Drik Drik has combined with another blaze, and is burning out of control. T it is now burning out more than 7,000 hectares of bushland. That is one of nine fires burning across Victoria.

bushland. That is one of nine fires
burning across Victoria. We will have more on the bushfire situation shortly for you. Now let's head overseas. Nearly six months since the Colorado movie theatre massacre, the accused gunman, James Holmes, has appeared in court. 12 people were killed and more than 50 others were injured, when the shooter opened fire during a screening of the 'The Dark Night Rises'. Robert Penfold joining us from LA. Good morning. We are hearing new details about this shooting. Is it likely to go to trial?Well, Amelia, at the moment, it is really too early to stay sthidge. But, certainly, the prosecutors are aiming for that. At this stage they have not really revealed also if they will be asking for the death penalty. Now, today's appearance was - you have to remember this, it was a preliminary hearing. James Holmes is facing a total of 166 combined murder and attempted murder charges, now this hearing is expected to last about a week and today the first witnesses were the police officers. They were the ones who got there early on in the piece, giving dramatic testimony about when they first arrived at the scene. They thought Holmes, who was dressed in black military-style clothes, a helmet and gas mask - well, they thought he was a swat officer, offering no resistance, he seemed under the influence of something, and he was, they say, completely relaxed and somewhat detached from what was going on. He gave himself up. Police gave graphic descriptions of what it was like to run into the theatre and find such a distressing sight. They drove many of the victims to hospital in their own squad cars and one policeman carried out a badly wounded married couple and told the court today how they told him, "Please, just leave us, please help us find our little daughter." Another police officer went in and found her, but she had died. Holmes, who now has a beard, sat pretty quietly in the court. We understand that his lawyers will try to prove that he is mentally unstable, insane, to try to avoid a death sentence. That is what happened in court today.Sadly, since that shooting, of course, we have seen many others - the most recent, perhaps the most horrendous, the school shooting in Connecticut. Do you think that this hearing might have an impact on America's gun debate?As you can imagine, first, there was this. Then, just prior to Christmas, as you say, the massacre of the 26 students and teachers in Connecticut. It didn't surprise me at the time after this attack here, there was no high-level call for toughening up gun laws. It is the way it has been with all the previous massacres - I have seen it happen year after year. As we have seen, the murder of the school children, at long last, has spurred action. We hear the President will be announcing a plan to try to bring a halt to the gun madness, in the next week or so. There will be some sort of change in laws, but how they will get that through, it will be very difficult. Sadly, Amelia, it has taken many more lives to be lost before we have got any action.Yeah, it is incredibly sad. Alright, Rob Penfold, thank you for that. We are going to go live now to the Rural Fire Service headquarters in Sydney, where the commissioner is about to hold a press conference with the NSW Police Minister.

Look, good morning. Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for your coming in this morning. Together with me, I have our two fire commissioners, the Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons and Mr Greg mullens, the Commissioner of Fire and Rescue NSW. I have the assistant commissioner Mick Fuller from the NSW Police Force. I think it is fair to say that the anticipated, or, indeed, yesterday's predicted weather, is now starting to play out. There was an expectation, indeed, a hope, that something would abate this weather condition as it moves across NSW. The fact is that it is not. We are being confronted with a situation where up to three areas are deemed to be catastrophic in terms of the fire conditions. 90% - in fact, 90% of NSW is deemed to be severe or hire. The far western and far south-west coast areas of the state have a fire danger rating as severe, and the rest of NSW, of course will be at the very high level. The focus, apart from being right around the state, but most certainly in the catastrophic areas, are in the areas of the Illawarra, Shoalhaven and the Southern Ranges. Of course, the areas of Greater Sydney, the Greater Central Ranges, the Lower Central Western Plains, Monaro, Alpine, ACT areas, Southern Slopes and Riverina, have a fire danger in the extreme. At 11am this morning, the temperature in Sydney was 35.5, Nowra, 38.1, Riverina, 38.6, Bega has hit 39.4. When I spoke to the Rural Fire Service Commissioner, Shane Fitzsimmons, who will speak to you in a moment's time, earlier this morning we had over 100 fires burning throughout NSW. Over 20 of those were yet to be controlled. I'm yet to get a briefing, as I've just arrived in here this morning, to the Rural Fire Service headquarters to get an understanding in terms of what has developed since that time. I think it is fair to say that yesterday's forecast, that today would be one of the worst in terms of temperature for NSW, that predicted high is most certainly, in fact, the case in NSW. I'm going to hand over to Mr Fitzsimmons in a minute, to ask him to update you all in terms of the development as we see it across NSW. SniefpltThank you, Minister. As the Minister indicated, the forecast of yesterday appears to be materialising right across parts of NSW. At 9:30 this morning, 10 o'clock this morning, we were already seeing a significant number of fire-weather districts in the identified areas already into severe fire danger ratings. We have seen, as the Minister rightly said, we have 100 fires on the books, dealing with just over 20 fires that remain uncontained. In the last little while, a number of emergency warnings, an emergency alert has been issued for fires down in the south-east of NSW, particularly in the Cooma-Monaro area, and Yarrabin area. Originally it was about relocating or taking shelter - it is now too late to relocate in those areas. Also, we have a new fire starting out near the Bega Valley, just to the east of Brogo. Similarly, emergency warnings and alerts are going out to communities in those areas. We have a fast-running and developing grassfire. Right across the state, we are seeing fires that we had on the books from yesterday, and previous days, breaching some of their containment lines and running. We have also got fire agencies identifying and dealing with new fires that are starting up already under these hot, dry conditions. We have got, as I mentioned earlier, literally thousands of firefighters on stand-by across the fire-weather areas. A combination of national parks, for estuary, fire and rescue NSW, and, of course, RFS volunteers - all on stand-by at their local stations. Indeed, we have more than 21 strike teams of firefighters formed up in units of fire tankers, crewed with men and women available and prepositioned in some of the key areas to support the local firefighting response and bolster the initial attack in order to try to secure fires at the outset before they take hold under these conditions. It is a long way ahead. We've got a lot of daylight left and we have a lot of night-time left under these conditions. As we talked about yesterday, the front that is moving through NSW is not expected to pass through some of our worst areas until much later tonight. Certainly, through the Shoalhaven and Illawarra - we are not expecting the front to move through until 9pm. For people around Sydney, we are not expecting to see the front move through until after midnight. The Bureau of Metreiology have indicated that we can expect to see temperatures in Sydney at midnight 30 degrees or more - there is a lot of heat left in the day, a lot of hot, dry air being drawn down from central Australia, strong winds across many areas. We are already seeing wind strengths of up to 60km/h to 70km/h, and plenty of the areas well and truly into severe. We saw temperatures in the mid-to high 30s out west at 9:30 this morning and even down on the south coast in places of the Shoalhaven. Temperatures were up over 30 degrees by 9 o'clock. It is going to be a long, hot day for firefighters. It is going to be a long, hot day for communities right across these fire danger regions. As the minister rightly pointed out, the catastrophic areas of Shoalhaven, Illawarra, and Southern Ranges, we've seen a good response from communities and holiday-makers right throughout those areas, heeding the advice that leaving early is the safest option. People were packing up and moving out last night, and, again, we have seen that again this morning. That is the safest thing to do in the forecast conditions, and those areas. If you are in a bushfire- risk area, if you are at an at-risk location, leaving early is your safest option. We don't want decisions left to the last minute under these sorts of conditions.

Alright, the Rural Fire Service Commissioner there, and the NSW Police Minister Michael Gallache, confirming that authorities in the state are facing extremely dangerous day. Three areas are declared as catastrophic - Illawarra, Shoalhaven and Southern Ranges. 0% of NSW is facing a severe fire danger. The threat is ongoing. We will keep you up to date on the developments right throughout the day and take a quick break. When we come back, our reporter is at the fire ground at Yarrabin, near Cooma in NSW, burning out of control. How Sydneysiders are keeping cool when the heat is on, we cross live to our reporter in Bondi. And in other news, an 8-year-old girl winched off Fraser Island, after being stung by a jellyfish. This program is not captioned. Smoke? Nah, I'm good.

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Welcome back to Nine's Morning News Hour, these are the top stories. The heat is building towards a scorching 43 degrees in Sydney today, with authorities urging residents of all ages to keep cool and keep hydrated. More than 100 blazes are burning around NSW right now, with catastrophic fire conditions declared on the state's south coast and sourngesourngesournge, and a fire

Southern Ranges and Southern Ranges and a fire is out of control in Yarrabin. A man is facing charges over a blaze north-west of Hobart. Well, as Australia continues to swelter, or battle dangerous fires and fire conditions, Sydney is heading for a top of 43 degrees today. Let's go to Nine's Lizzie Pearl at Bondi Beach for us. What are people doing to keep accommodation inAnything they can do. -- keeping to kiep cool? Anything they can do. At Bondi, it is not 12 o'clock, but there is not much space left on the sand. At last check, it was around 33 degrees. There is a lot of cloud here around at the coach. If the cloud moves off, we will be getting close to the 43 degrees which is forecast, and possibly even reaching the 44.1 degrees, the last hottest day on record back in our 2006 on New Year's Day. The beach day began early for a lot of Sydney niezers today. They got up early and got their exercise out of the way, some even went for a dip right on dawn there, and just to start off the day as cool as possible before we really head into that heat of the day. But, look, the humans are not the only city drens who have been call - residents who have been cooling off. The tapirs at strong ga zoo cooled off under the water. The gorillas were given treats to play with. The zebras were given carrot ice cubes to munch on, and the lions enjoyed lapping up milk-flavoured ice blocks. Some of the animals, of course, they are used to this heat, from searing temperatures in Africa and what not. They will be coping a lot better than us, the humans today. Liets have a chat with some of the people we spoke -- let's have a chat to some of the people that we spoke to earlier. It is very hot. I will be at work, unfortunately! You get out in the morning and do this, and that is all you want. It is great.Phew...hot!Trying to get a bit of the beach in before it is too hot to be outside.Hitting the beach early. Get wet and go home. Lizzie, as always, the people most at risk in these conditions are the elderly, and the very young people. That's right, Amelia. Today, more than any other day, it is so important to keep an eye on the kids. Don't leave them in the car - that goes for animals as well. Make sure they are well hydrated, have hats, enough water, and really keep them as cool as possible. That goes for elderly residents as well, maybe go and knock on the neighbour's doors, make sure they have enough icy cool water in the fridge, the air conditioning is on, the fans are on. Look, today is no day to save money on your power bill. Keep an eye on people, on people in your street and really look out for others. This heat is expected to stay with us for much of the day. There is a southerly change coming, won't be until later on tonight, perhaps early tomorrow. Thank you for that. Just hearing reports that it is already 38 degrees in the Sydney CBD at the moment. In the meantime, an emergency warning has been issued for a fire at Yarrabin, near Cooma in NSW. For the latest, I'm joined on the phone by Kerrie Yaxley at the fire zone. What is happening there? F Well, Amelia, the fire is burning out of control near Mount Forest Road, east of Cooma. We understand that it is currently impacting on properties. There are at least 15 to 16 properties in that area at risk. Now, the fire has jumped its containment line, over the river, heading towards the Kybian Valley, having firefighters worried. There is a lot of dense bushland there, a lot of properties in that area at the moment. They are trying to work out how many people might be affected by that. Now, the firefighters in Cooma are using water bombers, helicopters, and around three aeroplanes. As for the conditions, it is already around 30 degrees, expecting to top at 37. But the real problem is the wind - it is up to 50km/h now and rising to 70km/h. It is very strong, Amelia. I'm sitting in our 4-wheel drive and the wind is shaking the car. The situation is not looking good at all here.It sounds an extremely anxious time, Kerrie. The bushfire emergency is still unfolding in Tasmania, where blazes have been burning for the last five days now. A man is facing charges over a fire north-west of Hobart. He is accused of leaving a campfire unattended, sparking a blaze at Lake Repulse. Meantime, a group of people stranded on the Tasman peninsula have made it safely out of the area in a special convoy. Supplies have begun to arrive in Dunalley, providing desperately needed essentials for the locals. We have got a lot of unexpected deliveries, and it has been amazing. We have had so much come in. Yeah, it has been overflowing. A lot of food and clothing coming in. Yeah, we have had to bring in this marquee and set up so that we have enough space for food.Insurance assessors are due in tear ya today, to look at the properties damage -- in the area today, to look at the properties damaged. Other news, and it is believed seven holiday-makers have been stung by irukandji in Fraser Island. An 8-year-old girl from the Gold Coast was airlifted to hospital late yesterday, suffering severe pain, nausea and cramps. The tiny venomous jellyfish are usually found off the north Queensland coast but have been known to travel south if the water temperature is warm enough. There is a royal draw card at this year's Magic Millions with the Queen's granddaughter arriving for the big race. Zara Phillips is an ambassador for the event that runs on the Gold Coast this Saturday. As ah selection of the best bloodistic from around the world has arrived from the world, and Zara Phillips has arrived. She was here for the unique barrier draw, where horses gallop along the crown and glory of the Gold Coast - Surfers Paradise. She is an Olympic silver medallist in her own right and the official ambassador of the Magic Millions.It was easy for me to be involved, because it was about horses and the passion I have for horses, and I have a love of racing and getting women involved. You know, it was quite an easy decision.How nice is it for you to be involved with something like this and bring it out to Australia and then go back home and spread the word of Magic Millions?You know, hopefully, a lot of people will come out anyway, and it is getting more and more popular and buying horses from the Southern Hemisphere, taking them back. You know, it is just trying to make it more global. I think it is a great thing. I'm looking forward to being a part of it this weekend. The Clary Coners trained Assail is the firm favourite with Craig Williams on board. Organisers could not have written a better script, when the filly drew Barrier number one for the race on Saturday. Corey Norris has the sport for us today from Melbourne. Good morning, Corey. Sam Stosur is struggling?She is. She will have to complete her Australian Open preparation on the practice court after another first- round exit from the Sydney International. We will hear from the world number 9 next. And have we seen Shane Warne bowl for the last time? This program is not captioned.

Hello again. Sam Stosur will head into the Australian Open on the back of two straight first-round defeats after she was eliminated from the Sydney International. The world number 9 has now lost her past five matches on Australian soil, following a shock upset to China's Zheng Jie. It was supposed to be a routine first-round rout for the world number nine, but just six weeks after ankle surgery, there was still plenty of rust. COMMENTATOR: Oh, dear, not finding many strings.It is bags, another loss. To be honest, I fowl a lot better after this loss than last week's loss. I feel like I did better things.Taking on world number 42, Zheng Jie, there were plenty of missed opportunitys for both players. Stosur made it only to three sets after saving the second in a tie-breaker. COMMENTATOR: Lucky she missed! It is out and Stosur wins in the second set.But three match points proved too much. The loss leaving her with just two matches under her belt heading into the first Grand Slam of the year.Feel like I feel really good out there. It is just a matter of trying to play better. The 2011 US Open champion did show signs of her champion shf-winning form... And it is those moments giving her hope for Melbourne.If I can feel good out on court and feel like I have some control over what I'm doing and play well, then, you know, that will be good for me. If I can do those things I have a good chance of winning matches. Well, we may never seen Shane Warne bowl again if the Melbourne Stars go down in tonight's Big Bash clash against the Sydney Thunder. The Stars' main man copped a one-match ban for his fiery encounter with the Renegades captain Marlon Samuels. The zoirbgs proved too good for the Brisbane Heat last night. The Sixers dominated with a 5-wicket win against the homeside to be one victory outside the top five. Their fate will be decided when they face the Renegades tomorrow night. Golf now, and it is supposed to be the final day of the Tournament of Champions in Hawaii but they only teed off this morning. Rainy and windy conditions delayed play by three days. Marc Leishman is eight shots behind leader Ricky Fowler. That is the sport, Amelia. Have a great day. Still to come on Nine's Morning News Hour - an update on the bushfire situation, plus the finance and the latest

This program is not captioned. Welcome back. Let's get an update for you on the fire situation as

for you on the fire situation as it stands.

Yarrabin is near Cooma. A fire there is threatening homes. Drens have been told it is too late to leave - they should stay and seek shelter.

To the national

To the national weather forecast now:

To finance:

And that's Nine's Morning News Hour for this Tuesday. Wendy Kingston will be here for our new programme '9 News Now' at 3pm this afternoon. You can join in the discussion by going to our Facebook page:

Join me for more news at 4:30 this afternoon. I'm Amelia Adams. Thanks for your company. Supertext captions by Red Bee Media - www.redbeemedia.com.au.

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LET'S HAVE A LITTLE FUN TODAY ANNOUNCER: HERE SHE IS NOW - ELLEN DEGENERES! LET'S GIVE A LITTLE LOVE AWAY YEAH, YEAH GET UP GET YEAH, LET'S HAVE A LITTLE FUN (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE) THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. (CHEERS AND HAVE A SEAT, EVERYBODY. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. HAVE A SEAT. RIGHT BACK AT YOU, I SAY. THANKS FOR ALL THAT. AND I'M GLAD YOU'RE HERE. I WILL START WITH CONGRATULATIONS ARE IN ORDER. RIGHT BEFORE WE WENT ON BREAK, TONY OFFICIALLY BECAME A UNITED STATES CITIZEN. (CHEERS YES, I DID. YAY. SO IT'S TIME TO LOSE THAT

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