Coun­cil to clamp down on open fire

By­law in ef­fect gives Coun­cil more con­trol over fires in ur­ban ar­eas

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

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.

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