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Let’s work together for a safe summer

As we head into the summer holiday period, Hastings District Council wishes everyone a safe Christmas and New Year as they come together with family and friends.

To help get through the season without incident, our partners have joined us to share some key safety messages.

As we all know summer in Hawke’s Bay can be long, hot, and dry, which makes fire a real risk in our rural areas, as has been seen with some significant fires around the country over the last few summers.

Hawke’s Bay principal rural fire officer Trevor Mitchell says there are some simple things we can all do to reduce the risk of fire this summer.

• In rural areas consider mowing the lawn first thing in the morning. By the afternoon the sun has normally dried everything out and there is more likelihood of the mower causing a spark and catching the surrounding grass on fire.
• If you are having a campfire, or any other open fire, make sure they are properly put out when finished – including pouring water over the ashes to completely douse any hot embers.

Further information about whether it’s okay to light fires and other safety information can be found on the checkitsalright.co.nz website.
Hastings District Council would also like to encourage people to be mindful of how they dispose of rubbish over the summer.

A carelessly discarded cigarette butt is all it takes to start a fire. Whether in urban or rural areas please be considerate in how you dispose of rubbish.
For any illegal dumping Council can be contacted on (06) 871 5000 to collect.
Summer can also mean increased risk of theft and burglaries as the weather gets hot and we go on holiday or host guests.

Hawke’s Bay Police senior sergeant Bryan Smith has some handy hints to keep yourself and your property safe:

• Always lock your vehicle. If you can, install a car alarm, use steering locks and, for bikes, use good quality chains.

• When you head down to the beach or the river ensure you keep your keys and other valuables secure and close to you. Don’t have your address written on the key ring and if you can – separate the house keys from the car keys.

• Don’t leave property sitting visible in cars. Keep them secure and out of site.
• If you’re out the back having a BBQ, mowing the lawns, etc then make sure your front door is locked and windows secure.

• Record the serial numbers of your valuables and keep that list somewhere safe. Tradies – consider engraving your tools and taking photos of them as well to help Police identify them if they are taken.

• Know your neighbours. As well as keeping an eye out for any suspicious activity, you may be able to help each other out by making the place looked lived in – collecting the mail, parking cars up driveways, mowing the front lawn, etc.

Hastings District Council hopes that by sharing this information we can all work together to have a great summer free of incident.


ENDS

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