Two ma­jor scrub blazes fuel of­fi­cer’s fears

The Northland Age - - Local News -

North­land’s Prin­ci­pal Ru­ral Fire of­fi­cer, Myles Tay­lor, is con­sid­er­ing im­pos­ing a to­tal fire ban across the re­gion af­ter two ma­jor scrub blazes racked up a six-fig­ure bill.

Rub­bish fires were also be­ing lit on a reg­u­lar ba­sis, without per­mits, par­tic­u­larly in the Far North, de­spite the re­stricted fire sea­son that took ef­fect on De­cem­ber 1, Mr Tay­lor said last week.

Tues­day night’s scrub fire at Taipa Point, where two he­li­copters sup­ported ground crews, cost around $20,000 to ex­tin­guish, while an ear­lier blaze south of Kaikohe, which burned for four days, cost around $200,000. Four he­li­copters, two bull­doz­ers and 25 ru­ral fire­fight­ers bat­tled that fire.

Crews from Kaikohe re­turned to the scene last week, and were ex­pected to con­tinue mon­i­tor­ing it un­til there was sig­nif­i­cant rain.

Mr Tay­lor said a to­tal fire ban was be­ing con­sid­ered be­cause most calls were to unat­tended rub­bish fires in the mid­dle of the day, when tem­per­a­tures were at their high­est.

“If peo­ple don’t take re­spon­si­bil­ity for their ac­tions, then we’ll close the fire sea­son by declar­ing a ban,” he said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.