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NSW teens arrested for accidental bushfire

AAP logoAAP 4/11/2016 By Anna Hitchings

Two 16-year-old boys are believed to be behind a bushfire north of Newcastle which spread out of control after they lit a campfire.

Police say the teens lit the campfire before 1pm on Saturday during a total fire ban in the Shoal Bay area near Port Stephens.

The fire spread out of control and burnt out an acre of bushland and the boys were detained by locals before they were arrested by police.

They will be dealt with under the Young Offendors Act.

More than 1100 firefighters spent the day battling 65 bushfires across NSW, including five out of control, on Saturday.

An emergency warning was twice put in place for a blaze in Cessnock but has since been downgraded to a watch and act by the Rural Fire Service.

About 175 firefighters battled the bushfire, which threatened about 50 homes.

Another emergency warning for a fire off Lone Pine Road in Port Stephens covering 620 hectares has also been downgraded to watch and act.

The blazes were fanned by hot and gusty conditions, with winds up to 89km/h blasting NSW on Saturday, with conditions easing at night.

A 16-year-old boy was charged on Saturday morning after a bushfire which destroyed at least one home and damaged other properties in Sydney’s west on Friday.

It began in the Llandilo area and spread over 300ha, destroying at least one home, significantly damaging others and causing evacuations from schools and nursing homes before it was contained.

The youth, who was arrested at Penrith, has been charged with intentionally causing a fire and being reckless as to its spread.

The RFS says NSW could continue to experience similar weather until a cool change on Wednesday.

"It will still be warm and dry on Sunday, heating up on Monday and on Tuesday - we could see some hot and windy weather before some possible cooler weather returns on Wednesday," RFS Inspector Ben Shepherd told AAP.

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