4 Jan 2010

Flooding fears ease

3:49 pm on 4 January 2010

The threat of flooding in the west of New South Wales has eased after the Castlereigh River peaked below its predicted high.

The Bureau of Meteorology says the river has risen to slightly more than five metres, after initial reports it would reach 5.5 metres.

The State Emergency Service has ordered more than 1200 residents in and around the town of Coonamble to evacuate their homes.

State Emergency Service spokesperson Phil Campbell says it is now unlikely these properties will be flooded, but locals are still being asked to stay on higher ground.

Bushfire threat

Meanwhile, firefighters in Western Australia are hopeful of taking control of a bushfire that has threatened homes in the Perth outer suburb of Brigadoon.

The fire began on Sunday afternoon and is still burning out of control in the foothills near the city.

However, authorities say it has slowed and moved away from houses.

It is understood the fire has destroyed one house and a shed.

The fire and emergency services authority says nearly 50 firefighters are battling the blaze, which has so far burnt through 100 hectares.