New South Wales (NSW) health officials issued poor air quality warnings in Sydney and other areas on Thursday, October 31, due to smoke from wildfires in the north of the state. Haze is reducing visibility in multiple areas as smoke from the wildfires drifts south, including in Sydney, Hunter, and Illawarra. NSW Rural Fire Services have battled at least 40 blazes, including in the Doyles River and Lake Cathie areas as of 14:45 (local time) on Thursday. Firefighters did not report any injuries, but at least 45 homes have been destroyed. Strong winds and dry conditions may cause the blazes to rapidly spread or create new fires. Poor air quality conditions are likely to continue through the coming days.
Individuals in New South Wales are advised to monitor the situation, adhere to instructions issued by local authorities (e.g. evacuation notices, road closures), and exercise caution when traveling near wildfires. Children and those with chronic respiratory illnesses should exercise increased caution and limit outdoor activity in areas affected by smoke. Individuals are advised to seek medical attention if experiencing breathing difficulties or other health concerns.
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