TOTAL fire bans remain in force in NSW and Victoria as the fire-ravaged states start hotting up again.
Firefighters are battling to keep the most dangerous blazes in check.
Fires still burned on Tasmania's Tasman Peninsula, the region hardest hit in the past week, but residents were finally allowed to start returning home today, many wondering if they still had homes to return to.
Authorities in the mainland states worked overtime to ensure other communities were spared the same destruction, with most attention centred on three big fires in NSW - near Yass, Cooma and Sussex Inlet - and one fresh blaze near Ballarat in central Victoria.
The three NSW fires have burned over 30,000ha between them, with fire fronts extending up to 100km, and firefighters concerned some homes could be threatened as temperatures soar back into the 40s.
"That's an awful lot of fireline for firefighters to monitor," Deputy Rural Fire Service Commissioner Rob Rogers said.
"Obviously that's going to be troubling over today and particularly tomorrow when it will be even hotter."
Around 100 fires still burned in NSW this afternoon, with the number of uncontained fires rising from 14 to 18 in the space of an hour.
At Deans Gap, in the Shoalhaven area, the coastal villages of Wandandian and Bendalong were at greatest risk.
Firefighters at Yass were concerned about possible threats to isolated rural properties.
Residents at Yarrabin, near Cooma, were advised to keep watch for embers, flame and smoke on the eastern side of the fire.
More than 350,000ha have burnt in the fires and 10,000 livestock have perished, but just one house has been destroyed.
"We've been relatively lucky so far," Mr Rogers said, "but we're going into a period of warm days for the next few days.
"The winds are not expected to be quite as strong as they were on Tuesday, but given how dry it is and the number of fires we have, we're still quite concerned."
An emergency warning was issued for Blampied and surrounding towns in Victoria's central highlands as a fast-moving 500ha grass fire swept out of control this afternoon.
Firefighters in southwestern Victoria contained a week-long blaze which has burnt almost 12,000ha near Kentbruck.
They also contained a fire in bushland at Goroke in the Wimmera region that started on Tuesday and became active again yesterday.
Extreme fire danger remained in the Wimmera and north central districts, with severe ratings across the rest of the state as temperatures were expected to pass 40C.
Tasmanian police commander Peter Edwards said fires remained active in the Tasman Peninsula, where 130 homes have been lost.
As evacuated residents started returning home, he appealed for anyone without a genuine need to be there to stay away as crews worked to clear roads and restore power poles.
Tasmania's chief health officer, Dr Roscoe Taylor, warned residents to wear disposable overalls and masks to protect against risks such as asbestos dust as they searched through debris.
The remarkable safety record in these fires continued, with just one firefighter receiving arm and shoulder injuries when he stumbled on steep ground at Lake Repulse, northwest of Hobart.