Boats are pulled ashore as smoke and bushfires rage behind Australia’s Lake Conjola on Thursday. Thousands of tourists fled the country’s fire-ravaged eastern coast this week ahead of worsening conditions. Robert Oerlemans/AP hide caption

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Robert Oerlemans/AP

Record heat has contributed to the ferocity of massive bushfires that have swept through eastern Australia in recent days, forcing mass evacuations and killing at least 11 people since Monday. The flames now threaten the outskirts of the country’s largest city, Sydney.

Authorities are warning of worsening conditions over the weekend. The rural fire service deputy commissioner for New South Wales, Rob Rogers, has warned of the “frighteningly quick” advance of the blazes.

Property damaged by the East Gippsland fires in Sarsfield, Victoria, on New Year’s Day. Jason Edwards/Reuters hide caption

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Jason Edwards/Reuters

A firefighter sprays foam retardant on a back burn ahead of a fire front in the New South Wales town of Jerrawangala on New Year’s Day. Peter Parks/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Peter Parks/AFP via Getty Images

Evacuees walk to the beach at Mallacoota in Victoria to board vessels and be ferried out. POIS Helen Frank/Australian Defence Force hide caption

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POIS Helen Frank/Australian Defence Force

Crews monitor fires and begin back burns between the towns of Orbost and Lakes Entrance in East Gippsland, east of Melbourne, on Thursday. Darrian Traynor/Getty Images hide caption

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Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

A view of fire damage on Friday in Sarsfield, east of Melbourne. Thousands of people have been stranded in the remote coastal town following fires across East Gippsland. Darrian Traynor/Getty Images hide caption

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Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

HMAS Choules, aiding in the evacuations, is seen off the coast of Mallacoota, Victoria. POIS Helen Frank/Australian Defence Force hide caption

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POIS Helen Frank/Australian Defence Force

Evacuees from Mallacoota are transported by landing craft to MV Sycamore. LSIS Shane Cameron/Australian Defence Force hide caption

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LSIS Shane Cameron/Australian Defence Force

Bushfires are seen between the towns of Orbost and Lakes Entrance in East Gippsland on Thursday. HMAS Choules evacuated thousands of people stranded in the remote coastal town of Mallacoota. Darrian Traynor/Getty Images hide caption

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Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

A helicopter drops water on a bushfire outside of Batemans Bay in New South Wales on Thursday. Peter Parks/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Peter Parks/AFP via Getty Images

Smoke rises from a massive bushfire in this image released Thursday by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning in Gippsland, Victoria. DELWP Gippsland/AP hide caption

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DELWP Gippsland/AP

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