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An intense heat wave is worsening fires and forcing residents to evacuate.

Australia: Heat wave worsens fires

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    Tuesday, January 14, 2014, 3:03 PM -

    Extreme head is being experienced in south Australia and Victoria, worsening fires.

    Both states are sweltering through a fierce heat wave with temperatures hitting the low to mid 40s - and there's no relief expected until the weekend.

    Firefighters are on high alert. They managed to stop this blaze spreading to properties near Geelong -- but they fear the worst is yet to come.

    "This is only the start of it. We're going to go four days straight and it will peak on Friday with very strong winds," one official said.

    It's so hot people have been warned to just stay indoors.

    RELATED: Australian man dies while defending home from intense wildfire

    Meanwhile, west Australian authorities say they're doing all they can to ensure residents who lost their homes in a bushfire in the Perth Hills can inspect their properties.

    The fire destroyed 52 homes, but is now contained and controlled.

    Many residents are frustrated that roadblocks remain in place as firefighters mop up in the area.

    Hundreds of people who were evacuated remain in limbo -- but some residents who've lost homes are expected to be escorted into the fire zone to assess the damage Wednesday.

    Others may not be allowed into the fire zone for days.

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