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Fire Restrictions Imposed

Fire Restrictions Imposed

Near drought conditions, coupled with low soil moisture and river levels in the Hastings District, has raised the fire danger to a point where fire restrictions must be imposed in spite of predicted rainfall over the Hawke’s Bay region.

The predicted rain will help to dampen the dead vegetation and dust in some areas but will not reverse the overall fire danger until new growth can take place in the spring.

NZ Fire Service and Council Fire Officers are concerned about the amount of dead vegetation that is now prevalent throughout the Heretaunga Plains and coastal areas.

Mike Maguire, Principal Rural Fire Officer at Hastings District Council, said drought conditions have been forecast during the next few months adding to the low water tables presently being experienced.

“Should the traditional hot dry North-Westerly winds return to Hawke’s Bay, fire conditions are likely to become extreme. The fire risk is now very high and we ask people not to light a fire without a permit”, said Mr Maguire.

Although rainfall is forecast it is not in sufficient quantity to reverse the current fire risk. Rainfall cannot be absorbed by dead vegetation and fire conditions are likely to become extreme once the sun and wind evaporate any moisture.

A Restricted Fire Season will be imposed from 8am Friday 7t December 2007 and will be reviewed on a daily basis.

Permit applications should be made to the relevant council offices allowing for up to three days for the application to be processed.


ENDS

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