Four killed by wildfires in Western Australia

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Four people have died in one of a series of wildfires sparked by lightening in Western Australia, police said on Wednesday, a deadly start to the country's summer bushfire season.

Western Australia police told the Australian Associated Press the deaths occurred in the North Cascade fire near Esperance, in the state's southwest, where some 300,000 hectares have been burned. The blaze is one of three major fires burning in the state since Sunday.

Wildfires are an annual event in Australia, but signs of rising summer temperatures have prompted some scientists to warn that climate change could increase the length and intensity of the fire season.

(Reporting by Lincoln Feast; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)