Canberra residents evacuated as bushfires merge at national capital: Live updates

The fire emergency heightened in the face of dreadful conditions on Thursday afternoon across the ACT and NSW.

Three people died after an air tanker crashed in Snowy Monaro.

Communities on the NSW South Coast, having already gone two rounds with fires, are again under threat. Two fires merged and threatened homes and buildings in Canberra's east and Queanbeyan. The Beard fire has now been downgraded to watch and act.

People in Beard, Oaks Estate and West Queanbeyan including Crestwood were told to seek shelter immediately, as the fire is travelling in an easterly direction. Later they were advised to stay inside and close all windows and doors due to the air quality.

People in Eurobodalla Shire have been told to seek shelter and the Green Wattle Creek fire in the Southern Highlands has been upgraded to Watch and Act.

Our journalists across Australian Community Media are covering these fires. The below links will take you to their free coverage on their corresponding news title.

The live blog below can take a moment to appear.

This story Canberra residents evacuated as bushfires merge at national capital first appeared on The Canberra Times.