Source: MIL-OSI Submissions
Source: Fire and Emergency New Zealand
Fire and Emergency is currently at two fires in Canterbury, one at Cass Bay and the other at Loburn.
Strong winds are fanning the fires and making them difficult to combat.
Principal Rural Fire Officer Bruce Janes says the winds have been gusting up to 130km/h throughout the day and are expected to last until tomorrow morning.
“Since the gusts got up earlier today, crews across the region have been chasing fires and attended multiple callouts right across the region.”
Canterbury is currently in a restricted fire season, where any open-air fire needs a permit. However, with the strong winds expected to last for another 12 to 18 hours, Fire and Emergency asks anyone with a fire permit to hold off burning until conditions ease.
Mr Janes also wants anyone who has had a recent fire to check that it is completely out.
“With winds as strong as what we are experiencing, hot ashes can easily get picked up, potentially starting a new fire.”
“We want to reduce the risks as much as possible, that’s why it is very important to check previous burns.”
“Over haul the area of the burn, pour water over it and check with the back of your hand that there is no heat,” Mr Janes says.
Fire and Emergency is also encouraging Cantabrians to think twice about using braziers, gas cookers or carrying out farming activities that could cause an ignition.
“While the winds are up and the fire dangers are high, it is more likely these activities could start a fire,” Mr Janes says.