Wind may re-spark Dunedin fire

Wind may re-spark Dunedin fire

1 September 2006

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New Zealand — A northerly wind forecast for the Dunedin area on Friday could cause problems for fire crews monitoring a forest fire.

The blaze which tore through 20 hectares of pine forest plantation south of Allanton and threatened buildings on Thursday night, took 26 ground crew and five helicopters around five hours to control.

Two homes were evacuated.

Principal rural fire officer Grahame Still says crew are aware of a northerly change which has the potential to cause trouble.

He says crews are expected to be at the site for most of the day, and hot spots will be checked out using heat sensors.

It is thought the fire started when a burning mattress blew off the back of a trailer in strong winds.

Authorities have found the trailer but are making further investigations before they can confirm what happened.

Still is urging people conducting land clearing operations to open the ground up and extinguish their fires properly, as strong winds have dried out the land.

He says burn-offs that were lit two or three days ago are flaring up.


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