What Fire Season Are We In? Thames-Coromandel District, including public conservation lands, forests, and offshore islands, is in a Restricted Fire Season as of 8 February 2018. Restricted Fire Season: During a restricted fire season, you will need a permit for all open air fires. As of 1 July 2018, permits can be arranged through Fire and Emergency New Zealand. Farmers and lifestyle block owners are urged to take extra care when burning large piles of wood. Burn early in the day during settled weather and light winds, and watch the fire until it is out. Unattended fires can escape very quickly and can cause serious damage. Escaped fires can require emergency response to suppress, which can result in a considerable cost to the landowner. If your concern is a fire risk, you can let Fire and Emergency New Zealand know about your concern by completing the online form available at www.fireandemergency.nz/at-home/overgrown-sections/ or calling 0800 336 942. Please note that Fire and Emergency is only able to take action to deal with genuine fire hazards, and not where the property is just unsightly or presents a health hazard. If you see an out of control fire, call the Fire and Emergency New Zealand on 111. Where ever you are in the district - be fire safe Is the fire really necessary? It is much safer to take rubbish to your nearest transfer station where it can be disposed of, instead of burning it. Head to the Waikato Regional Council's webpage to read more about what you can and can't burn in the Waikato Region. Always do a safety check and talk to your neighbours before you light any type of outdoor fire: if you can't control it, don't light it. Make sure: Fires in the open are supervised at all times There is adequate means of fire suppression available at all times - like a pressured water supply or a fire extinguisher The fire is totally extinguished when you are finished The following is a check list to be considered prior to applying for a fire permit and lighting a fire: YES I have cleared the area surrounding the intended fire site of combustible materials including kikuya grass. YES I have knowledge of the topography surrounding the intended fire site and what effect will it have on the fire, i.e. altitude, slope, aspect (north. south, east, west). YES I have identified any natural firebreaks nearby. YES I have considered how far the fire could go if it spreads. YES I have a pressurised water supply with hose or other approved fire suppression equipment, such as a tractor with a front-end loader. YES the fire is sited well clear of any underground services, cables or overhead power lines. YES I have a plan to notify the neighbours and other affected people. YES I have ensured there be no smoke nuisance to anyone and no smoke hazard to traffic. YES I can confirm the fire will be constantly attended until completely extinguished. YES I am aware of the weather conditons and long range forecast and what impact this will have on my intended fire. YES I can ensure there is clear access to the burn site for emergency services. Accessways are cleared of overhanging branches and there are no narrow or locked gates. YES I am aware if the fire gets out of control I will be liable for any costs. YES I have considered whether there a safer solution to deal with disposal of the rubbish such as taking it to the nearest transfer station or composting. Where can I get more information on making my property safer from fire? Visit Fire and Emergency New Zealand's www.checkitsalright.nz website for more information on fire safey or visit their general website www.fireandemergency.nz for information on the 2017 amalgamation of the country's urban and rural fire services.