All of New South Wales, South Australia, large parts of Queensland, and northern Victoria have been placed under a total fire ban on Thursday with extreme weather forecast. Follow the latest news and updates

9.22pm GMT

Sydney has again woken up to a thick blanket of smoke from bushfires burning to the west. It has become an increasingly common sight this summer.

The Department of Planning and Environment has predicted “poor” air quality for Thursday, which could worsen as the day progresses.

Another beautiful Sydney da—
Nope.
Not at all. #nswfires #sydneysmoke pic.twitter.com/aU2uYkin19

Another delightful day in Sydney unaffected by bushfire smoke (ha!) where it feels like you’re living on Tatooine pic.twitter.com/atiU9rUHc3

#sydneysmoke rolling in again just now ..a smelly dirty sepia fog …eerie. #Pittwater pic.twitter.com/VIYNfqfyQ9

Sydney – the bushfire smoke is coming back again …… pic.twitter.com/W8uYrzpNc3

9.16pm GMT

The RFS has warned that three major fires pose the biggest risk on Thursday. They are:

Dangerous fire conditions Thu 19 Dec will see statewide Total Fire Ban & Extreme fire danger rating for Greater Sydney region, Illawarra/Shoalhaven, Sthn Ranges. With start of school hols, check your travel plans & fire conditions along your route & destination. #nswrfs #nswfires pic.twitter.com/IcQxjUgSSO

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