Dunback fire still proves troublesome after four days

More than 20 firefighters continued to contain a vegetation fire near Dunback in East Otago yesterday, four days after the large blaze first broke out.

Crews from the Waitaki Voluntary Rural Fire Force, supported by four helicopters with monsoon buckets and diggers, remained at the scene in elevated terrain near McLay Rd yesterday to ensure the "blacking out'' of the area around the perimeter of the fire, a Fire and Emergency New Zealand spokeswoman said.

While the fire had been contained and had not spread, it had yet to be fully extinguished and as a result the area was monitored last night.

The spokeswoman said 27 firefighters were on the ground yesterday, from the Waitaki fire force and other brigades.

The blaze which burned about 10ha on a rural property, is believed to have been sparked by an electrical fault on a power pole. It was initially reported about 9.20pm on Thursday and was thought to have be extinguished by fire crews that day.

However, the blaze reignited early on Friday, which resulted in four appliances and tankers from the Hampden Volunteer Fire Brigade and the Waitaki fire force battling the fire.

Three helicopters were employed to support two crews of firefighters from the Waitaki brigade on the ground on Friday, before one helicopter was stood down.

Crews, again supported by helicopters, were also at the scene over the weekend.

daniel.birchfield@odt.co.nz

 

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