Rural fire restrictions introduced in South Taranaki

Rural fire restrictions introduced in South Taranaki

Monday, December 11, 2017

The hot, dry weather has resulted in rural fire restrictions being introduced in South Taranaki.

From Monday (11 December) at 8am, a restricted fire season will begin for the whole of the area governed by South Taranaki District Council.

Taranaki/Ruapehu/Whanaganui principal rural fire officer Nigel Dravitzki said this includes from right around the coast to the Stratford boundary and down to Whanganui, which is also set to experience a restricted season.

“Doing it prior to Christmas is earlier than usual,” he said. In the past, fire restrictions in Taranaki were more likely to be imposed in med to late January.

This means a permit will be required to light a fire in the open air. It is an offence to light a fire in a restricted area without the necessary permission.

Dravitzki said along with the restrictions in South Taranaki, much of the lower North Island will also be in the same boat.

While places like Patea were ‘very dry’, the Stratford and New Plymouth districts had only been assessed as a ‘moderate risk’, but this was escalating, he said.

He urged people to stay vigilant as the conditions meant any type of flame was a threat.

“Using fire in this type of environment causes a huge risk.”

Dravitzki said people should delay any burn-off activity until later in the summer.

“We just want everyone to be safe.”

The restricted fire season will remain in place until it is either revoked or amended by Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

For updated information about the rural fire risk visit www.checkitsalright.nz or call 0800 658 628.