As Dunedin city dries out in the warm temperatures, people
need to be more careful about any backyard burning, the Otago
Regional Council warns.
The Dunedin City Council had said the city's fire risk was
moderate-to-high and conditions at some times could make it
more likely for fires to start from accidental causes and
Regional council director, regional services, Jeff Donaldson
said the council was monitoring outdoor burning more closely
than usual to ensure smoke nuisance did not increase. Any
fires breaching the council's air plan could result in
instant fines of $300 being issued and, in more serious
cases, prosecution could result.
Since November, the council had received 65 complaints about
outdoor burning and, in two instances, the organisation had
received a fine. In both cases, they were repeat offenders,
People needed to consider their neighbours and the
environment when burning outside, he said. That meant any
burning on the ground or in a container outside a building
including bonfires, barbecues, campfires, braziers and
''Burning rubbish causes a nuisance to neighbours and can
cause serious air pollution, which can also be toxic.''
In Dunedin, residents were allowed to burn rubbish in their
backyard if the fire was more than 50m from any boundary and
the smoke was not a nuisance to neighbours.
Barbecues were allowed, as of right, provided the smoke, ash,
and smell did not cause a nuisance to neighbours at or beyond
a property boundary.
In the city, the council sub-contracted its air plan
enforcement to First Security, while the regional council
dealt with complaints on the city periphery and the Taieri.