Emergency warning for Hunter fire

Newcastle Airport was closed down on Saturday with an out of control bushfire nearby

An emergency bushfire warning has been issued in the Port Stephens region as firefighters tackle an out-of-control blaze that is closing in on Newcastle Airport.

The Airport was closed on Saturday afternoon, with flights cancelled or diverted due to the fire that is being fanned by a strong westerly winds.

Water bombing aircraft and more than 60 Rural Fire Service personnel are working to contain the fire that is threatening homes in the area.

It is too late to leave for residents of Barry Close, Cabbage Tree and Massonite Roads, as well as areas close to the Newcastle Aiport, according to the RFS, who advised people to take shelter.

The same advice has been given to people in Williamtown Drive, Technology Place, Kindler Way, Cresswell Way, Slades Road, Sandeman Street and Moxey Close.

An RFS spokesman said the airport had been closed due to the heavy smoke in the area.

Footage from a helicopter hovering over the fire area, uploaded to Facebook by the RFS, shows large plumes of smoke moving over the airport.

The video appears to show the fire just several hundred metres away from the airport.

A southerly wind change in the afternoon is expected to push the fire in a northerly direction.