FIRE

Strong winds and high temperatures increase the fire risk in Hawke's Bay

Tuesday 8 January 2013, 2:46PM
By Hastings District Council
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HASTINGS

Hawke’s Bay is in the grip of a dry spell and rural fire officers are becoming more concerned about the risk of fire, particularly over the next two days (Wed 9th & Thurs 10th).

Hastings District Council Principal Rural Fire Officer Trevor Mitchell says “The forecast is for the hot dry conditions to continue with temperatures around the 30 degree mark and strong gusty winds over the next two days. When the high temperatures are combined with strong winds there is the potential for the fire risk to increase rapidly. This afternoon (Tues) the fire risk has been raised to extreme and it is important that people heed the warnings and stay vigilant over fire safety.”

Trevor Mitchell says “We are asking that lawns are mowed in the early morning or later in the evening, as mowing in the heat of the day increases the risk of sparks which could ignite the very dry undergrowth. Any other activities which have the potential to cause a spark should be delayed or carried out at a time when the temperature is cooler.”

“The extremely hot weather that Hawke’s Bay is experiencing at the moment can also be dangerous to your health and it is important that the elderly and young children are kept hydrated at all times,” Mr Mitchell says.

Trevor Mitchell says “Strong winds are forecast over the next few days and that has the potential to spread fires very quickly, endangering lives and property and making them very challenging to control.”

The whole of Hawke’s Bay remains under a total fire ban which means no outdoor fires may be lit. Any fires should be reported immediately to 111.

For further information on the total fire ban go to www.hastingsdc.govt.nz/fire-restrictions