Cantabrians told to check forecast before lighting any fires

Photo: File
Photo: File
Fire and Emergency NZ is urging Cantabrians to think about the weather before lighting any fires this spring.

Canterbury principal rural fire officer Bruce Janes said the arrival of the nor’westly wind and dry weather combine at this time of year to create the perfect mix for potential scrub fires.

Janes says while there is "plenty of green grass around the region", recent frosts have pulled a lot of moisture out of the grass, and strong winds could quickly dry out the Canterbury Plains.

"We know a lot of land managers have been undertaking pre-planned burns over the last couple of months, but we just want to remind them to be careful about conditions if they have any more planned over the next month or six weeks," Janes said.

Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied
"We are expecting summer-like conditions to hit earlier than previous years, so caution and care are needed when planning and undertaking the burn.

"With any planned fire we would like to be contacted and informed about the fire; where it is, how big it is expected to be, what time it is going to be lit and if there’s any way we can help.

"We can help with reviewing weather patterns and identifying safe areas to burn. It is also important to be aware of the weather conditions in the days after your planned burn, as fires could easily flare up," Bruce Janes says.

Fire and Emergency NZ also recommends land managers check previous burn sites to ensure there is no chance of re-igniting embers which can flare up and be blown around.

"Carefully dampening down every fire is the important final step in managing every fire," Janes said.



Local trusted journalism matters - now more than ever

As the Covid-19 pandemic brings the world into uncharted waters, Star Media journalists and photographers continue to report local stories that matter everyday - yours.

For more than 152 years our journalists have provided Cantabrians with local news that can be trusted. It’s more important now than ever to keep Cantabrians connected.

As our advertising has fallen during the pandemic, support from you our reader is crucial.

You can help us continue to provide local news you can trust simply by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter