Council to clamp down on open fire
Bylaw in effect gives Council more control over fires in urban areas
A new bylaw adopted by the South Waikato District Council is set to extinguish the problems of open fires.
The bylaw, which came into effect last Wednesday, has given the council more control over open fires in the district’s urban areas.
It is set to reduce the risk of the spread of fires and prevent smoke from fires causing a nuisance.
An idea to completely ban outdoor fires was discussed but the council decided against it.
Communications manager Kerry Fabrie said even if the fires were banned Tokoroa’s air quality would still be an issue.
A 2012 report from the Waikato Regional Council showed that open fires contributed only 5 per cent of the dangerous PM10 emissions the community needs to reduce.
Domestic heating was found to be more at fault at 93 per cent.
The idea for the bylaw arose in a council workshop in September 2013 and earlier this year it went out for public consultation.
Only one person made a submission and was in support with a few issues around the wording.
Council’s rural fire officer Ian Wellings addressed those concerns.