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Canterbury Fires Update # 9

All three large vegetation fires in North Canterbury remain contained and controlled with two in mop up stage.

Swannanoa

Six fire crews are working to suppress the vegetation fire burning over an estimated 12 hectares in and around the Waimakariri riverbed near Christchurch. They are supported by two heavy diggers.

The fire which started yesterday is contained and under control.

Cordons will stay in place until the fire is out, and we ask that people stay well away from the area so our firefighters can focus on their task.

Loburn

Firefighters are in the final mop up stage at the fireground on Loburn Whiterock Road, Loburn in North Canterbury.

Three crews are working in the area today hunting down and extinguishing hotspots.

The Loburn fires started on Friday afternoon and burned through approximately ten hectares destroying two houses, a converted church, ten sheds and a number of cars and machinery.

Amberley

Overnight crews at the vegetation fire on Racecourse Road in Amberley extinguished a number of hotspots.

Today five crews, assisted by one digger and tankers are back on the fireground to continue this work.

The Amberley fire started on Friday afternoon and burnt an area roughly one kilometre by 500 metres, forcing nearby residents to evacuate their homes.

The causes of all three fires are under investigation.

A helicopter has been put on standby for immediate response in North Canterbury if required today.

Extreme care continues to be needed this weekend

Canterbury residents are reminded to take extreme care with all activities that could cause a spark that will set vegetation on fire. All fire permits have been suspended until 8am on Monday.

Every household in a rural area should have an evacuation plan in case of wildfire, because in the current conditions, fires move quickly and are very challenging to put out.

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