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. Permits can be arranged through your nearest Council office, or your local Voluntary Rural Fire Force Chief Fire Officer in more rural areas. Call Council's Customer Service on 07 868 0200 to get started. Or, visit our Fire permits, bans and exemptions page for more details and on online fire permit form. 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. For further information please visit our fire permit webpage for permits on Public Conservation Land. No fire permits will be issued during this time except under very limited conditions. If you see an out of control fire, call the Fire and Emergency New Zealand on 111. Applying for a fire permit Permits can be arranged through your nearest Council Service Centre, Voluntary Rural Fire Force Chief or Deputy in the more remote areas or by applying online here. (Note: This link goes to an online form. Please be aware we do not support Internet Explorer versions less than 10. Also, if you have IE 10 or 11, make sure compatibility mode is turned off. Here's how: http://www.howtogeek.com/128289/how-to-disable-compatibility-mode-in-internet-explorer/) A minimum of five days notice is required prior to the fire, as a site inspection may be required. Fire permits are issued free of charge. Each application will be considered on its merits taking prevailing weather conditions into account. Fire permits may be revoked at any time, should conditions require it. A fire permit does not exempt the permit holder from any liability for costs or damages caused by the fire should it get out of control or constitute a nuisance. (In other words, if you cause the fire, you get the bill for the crews and helicopters.) 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. For more information regarding any matters relating to fire permits, fire safety and or fire prevention, contact us on 07 868 0200 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.