A Queensland man who lost his home in a bushfire experienced a staggering twist of fate when he won a $1 million lotto prize.
The family from Mount Cotton, southeast of Brisbane, recently lost a home in bushfires in northern NSW.
With the home not insured, the man was in disbelief upon receiving the news he won the Wednesday Gold Lotto draw this week.
“Did I win one million dollars?” he questioned when he discovered the win.
“Am I seeing things? Is this real?
“Wow. This is unreal.”
The man told The Lott the win was a “miracle” and he couldn’t wait to kiss and cuddle his wife after her “special numbers” were used on the lotto entry.
He said the unexpected and well-timed win was a symbol of better things to come following the tragedy that struck his family.
“This really has come at the most incredible time,” he said.
“All that was left of the home were a few charred teacups.
“We didn’t know if we would ever be able to rebuild but now we definitely can.
“This is amazing. I can’t get over it.”
The winning numbers in the lotto draw were 9, 42, 24, 13, 22 and 11, while supplementary numbers were 26 and 1.
According to The Lott, 203 people across Australia became overnight millionaires with winning entries in the Monday & Wednesday Gold Lotto in 2019.
Parts of Australia brace for dangerous bushfire conditions
In South Australia, a second Kangaroo Island town has been evacuated as Country Fire Service crews deal with flare-ups and new outbreaks across the island fireground.
Parndana residents have been told to leave and head for Kingscote or Penneshaw amid severe bushfire conditions and deteriorating weather on Thursday.
The state of disaster declared in parts of Victoria has been extended as fire conditions are forecast to worsen in coming days.
Premier Daniel Andrews said the declaration, which increases government and agency powers to move people out of affected regions, would continue for East Gippsland and the northeast.
"We have forecast conditions of extreme danger, very significant fire activity is likely off the back of a hot day today, a hot day tomorrow," Mr Andrews told reporters on Thursday.
"A change is not coming through in the east of the state until late afternoon tomorrow and in the northern part of the state not until the evening on Saturday.
"This means that we have every reason to believe there will be significant fire activity over the next 48 hours, and that means it is appropriate that we continue the state of disaster."
Soaring temperatures and vigorous winds are also forecast to fan another "significant spike" in bushfire conditions across NSW.
Bureau of Meteorology spokesman Grahame Reader says there are widespread forecasts of very high-to-severe NSW fire danger for Friday.
"After a relative respite in the weather this week we are expecting another significant spike in (fire) conditions," he told reporters on Thursday.
"We will have hot and dry northwesterly winds and later in the day a vigorous southerly change will be moving through."
Temperatures could reach the mid-40s in western NSW before the southerly moves through on Friday afternoon, Mr Reader said.
"Hot and dry conditions fan the fire behaviour. Of significant concern is the gusty southerly change moving through," he said.
Bushfire weather across NSW is forecast to ease into the weekend.
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