13-year-old charged with arson
POLICE have charged a 13-year-old boy with arson in relation to a significant fire in North Mackay today.
It will be alleged around 11.45am, a blaze started within a business in the shopping complex on the corner of Phillip Street and Mackay-Bucasia Road.
Three businesses were significantly damaged as a result of the fire.
The boy will be dealt with under the provisions of the Youth Justice Act 1992.
He will face court on Monday.
Three other youths who were taken into custody for questioning following the fire have since been released.
Investigations are continuing.
SATURDAY: Mackay police have arrested four children and declared an emergency situation as an "enormous fire" burns in North Mackay.
Update: The emergency situation has been lifted. All roads are now open though delays are expected as a traffic backlog is cleared.
A police spokeswoman confirmed four juveniles were in police custody in relation to the incident.
Shop fronts for Toys'R'Us, Autobarn and Clark Rubber were totally engulfed by flames.
Police have declared an emergency situation under the Public Safety Preservation Act at a shopping centre fire in North Mackay.
Additional fire crews - now numbering seven in total - have been called to Greenfields Boulevard to fight the blaze, which remains out of control since the blaze started around 11.45am within a business on the corner of Phillip Street and Mackay-Bucasia Road.
An Emergency Services spokeswoman said the building had been evacuated with no missing people reported.
Roads immediately surrounding the scene are closed to all traffic and motorists are urged to avoid the area.
Traffic delays are expected.
Traffic diversions are in place on the following roads; Bruce Hwy (Nebo Road), Glenella Road, Heath Road, Sams Road, Willetts Road and Malcomson Street.
Local residents are advised to remain inside their homes and close doors and windows and take relevant precautions should they have a medical condition.
The cause of the fire is yet to be determined.
Police investigations are continuing.