Australian fires ‘contained’ for first time in New South Wales

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FILE – In this Monday, Dec. 30, 2019, aerial file photo, wildfires rage under plumes of smoke in Bairnsdale, Australia. U.S. officials said Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020 they planning to send at least 100 more firefighters to Australia to join 159 already there battling blazes that have killed multiple people and destroyed thousands of homes. (Glen Morey via AP, File)

(CNN) – All fires burning in the Australian state of New South Wales have been declared contained for the first time this season.

The New South Wales Rural Fire Service called it “great news” after “a very traumatic, exhausting and anxious bush fire season so far.

“The fire service’s deputy commissioner Rob Rogers said it had been “a truly devastating fire season for both firefighters and residents, who’ve suffered through so much this season.”

The announcement comes after months of fires in Australia left at least 28 people dead, about 3,000 homes destroyed and up to 1 billion animals affected.

Firefighters said there was still some fire activity in the far south of the state, but with all fires contained, emergency workers could “really focus on helping people rebuild.”

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