Thee worst wildfires in history has killed at least 18 people, destroyed more than 1,000 homes and left firefighters struggling to contain more than 100 blazes.
Conditions are likely to grow worse, with high temperatures and strong winds expected to fan conflagrations across Australia’s southeast this weekend.
In the state of Victoria, which declared a disaster on Thursday, some residents and tourists were evacuated by the Royal Australian Navy. Others were forced to join long lines of vehicles jammed onto escape routes.
New South Wales also declared an emergency, and evacuations from parts of the state could be the largest in its history.
Here is a look at some of the most powerful images of the destruction, residents’ attempts to flee to safety and the continuing effort to contain the fires.