Large swathes of the country devastated since the fire season began late July.
A total of 24 people have died nationwide, and in the state of New South Wales alone, more than 1,300 houses destroyed.
State and federal authorities are struggling to contain the massive blazes, even with firefighting assistance from other countries, including the United States.
All this has been aggravated by persistent heat and drought, and many point to climate change as a factor making natural disasters worsen.
There have been fires in every Australian state, but New South Wales remains the hardest hit.
Blazes have torn through bushland, wooded areas, and national parks like the Blue Mountains.
[Australian firefighters. Photos/ courtesy/ CNN].
Some of Australia’s largest cities have also been affected, including Melbourne and Sydney, where fires have damaged homes in the outer suburbs and thick plumes of smoke have blanketed the urban center.
Earlier in December, the smoke was so bad in Sydney that air quality measured 11 times the ‘hazardous’ level.
The fires range in area from small blazes isolated buildings or part of a neighborhood to massive infernos that occupy entire hectares of land.
Some start and are contained in a matter of days, but the biggest blazes have been burning for months now.
Each year there is a fire season during the Australian summer, with hot, dry weather making it easy for blazes to start and spread.
Natural causes are to blame most of the time, like lightning strikes in drought-affected forests.
[An Australian tries to cool down a burnt Kangaroo. Photo/courtesy/CNN]
Dry lightning was responsible for starting a number of fires in Victoria’s East Gippsland region in late December, which then traveled more than 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) in just five hours, according to state Agency Victoria Emrgency.
Humans can also be to blame. In November, the NSW Rural Fire Service arrested a boy, 19 on suspicion of arson, charging him with seven counts of deliberately setting fires over a six-week period.