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Northland Firefighters to the Rescue!

29 March 2001

Northland Firefighters to the Rescue!

Twelve Northland Department of Conservation firefighters are travelling to the opposite end of the country to help battle a blaze threatening large areas of conservation land in Canterbury.

The team left Kerikeri in the very early hours of Tuesday morning (2am) in time to catch a plane leaving Auckland for Christchurch at 6:50am.

Northland senior conservation officer in charge of fire fighting Matt Flynn said the large team had been in a position to help out their counterparts in the South Island because the fire risk to conservation lands in Northland was low.

DoC staff from Waikato and Bay of Plenty are also attending the fire.

The Northland team includes 11 men and one woman and is made up of two crew bosses, nine firefighters and one support person. All are full time DoC staff who undertake regular fire training sessions as well as their regular responsibilities.

“We practise our skills regularly and are certainly going to provide some welcome relief to the people that have been working on the fires until now,” Mr Flynn said.

“We have been fortunate in Northland that we have had such a low fire risk due to the high rainfall this summer although unfortunately almost the complete opposite situation has been experienced by our counterparts in the South Island. This is a good opportunity for us to share skills and help out,” he added.

The team is expected to stay in the South Island for 7-10 days.

For information on the Northland team please contact Matt Flynn on (025) 976 243 or for South Island updates Cheryl Colley on (03) 318 9243

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