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Emergency services responding to West Melton fire

Emergency services responding to West Melton fire

Emergency services are continuing to respond to a significant scrub fire in the West Melton area, west of Christchurch.

The fire is centred in the vicinity of the West Melton rifle range on the Old West Coast Road, and covers an area of approximately 1 kilometre by 500 metres. It is moving in a North-Easterly direction.

Five helicopters and 16 ground-based appliances and water tankers are currently involved in the response.

One flank of the blaze is already under control and it is expected the fire will be contained.

Police have evacuated the Aero Club and an IHC residential property on Weedons-Ross Road, along with several houses in the vicinity.

The Old West Coast Road is blocked and diversions have been put in place.

A no-fly zone is in place over the area.

Fuel tanks have been removed from the aerodrome as a precautionary measure.

A welfare and reconciliation centre has been established at the West Melton Community Centre.

NZ Fire Service representatives say it is too early to have any indication as to the cause of the fire. Continued vigilance by members of the public is urged in the current hot, dry conditions.

ENDS

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