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Aucklanders Asked To Take Extra Care In Extreme Fire Conditions

Fire and Emergency is asking Aucklanders to take extra care after recent fires on lifestyle blocks on the outskirts of the city.

Region Manager Ron Devlin says people should avoid activities which can cause a spark like using a chainsaw, mowing lawns, burning rubbish and driving vehicles with hot exhausts through long dry grass - especially during the afternoons, the hottest hours of the day.

"Three fires started on lifestyle blocks around Karaka and Clevedon in the last couple of weeks from sparks caused by machinery work."

The dryness for this length of time is unusual for Auckland and people are urged to take extra caution. While there has been a little bit of rain, it hasn’t been enough to change the fire risk in Auckland.

"Some of our biggest fires happen in Autumn when people mistakenly think the fire risk is less and stop being so careful. There is still a total fire ban which means NO fires are permitted.

"We’ll need a lot of rain to reduce the fire risk and the rain that is forecast is not enough.

"The dry weather is also putting pressure on Auckland’s water supply - especially those on tank water - and we’d rather not have to use this to put out a completely avoidable fire."

"Wait until the conditions become less dangerous and we can lift the fire ban before you burn your rubbish and do machinery work on your lifestyle block.

"We are constantly looking at the conditions and will lift the fire ban as soon as we can. Until then, there shouldn’t be any reason to light a fire.

"Please be vigilant. Talk to your family, neighbours and friends about how not to start fires and if you see smoke call 111."

Go to www.checkitsalright.nz to find more information on how to reduce the risk of fire.

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