TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Horrifying images have been posted online showing how bush fires turned the sky red in Victoria, Australia, trapping about 4,000 residents and visitors in Mallacoota.

– World news –

Terrified residents and holidaymakers gathered on an Australian pier after fleeing apocalyptic wildfires which turned the sky red, The Mirror reported.

Some 4,000 people were thought to be stuck in Mallacoota, in east Victoria, yesterday – and pictures have emerged of crowds taking refuge at the town’s wharf.

People were photographed on the pier with blankets and coolers as they prepared to swim to safety.

Sydney was cloaked in smoke yesterday, as intense heat and winds fueled wildfires in southeast Australia.

Fire columns as high as 8.7 miles were creating their own weather systems, generating lightning and strong winds.

New South Wales Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said there were preliminary reports of three potential fatalities in small towns in the state of New South Wales.

A further four people are unaccounted for in Victoria, meaning the casualty count for this bush fire season could increase from its current total of nine.

Authorities urged holidaymakers in New South Wales (NSW) to head to beaches to avoid fires inland of popular resort towns, where campgrounds and caravan parks are packed