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At approximately 01:46 this morning fire has broken out at the old Waipukurau Hospital which is on Porangahau Rd, Waipukurau.
This is an abandoned and unoccupied building.
Emergency services are on site in an attempt to bring the fire under control. It is suspected that the construction material used in the building contains asbestos.
For that reason as a safety precaution residents of houses at least 200 metres north of the scene are being evacuated.
The assembly area for evacuees is at the Memorial Hall on the intersection of River Terrace and State Highway 2.
It appears the fire is concentrated at the rear of the hospital.
At this stage the cause is unknown.
There have not been any casualties reported at this stage either at the scene or from surrounding houses.