INDEPENDENT NEWS

Waitaki Fires Update #1

Published: Mon 11 Mar 2024 09:08 AM
Otago firefighters are tackling wildfires in two rural areas of the Waitaki District, which were both reported shortly after midnight.
The first is in the Nenthorn Area, about 30km from Middlemarch, and the second fire is burning in the Earthquakes area about 7km from Duntroon. Neither are yet contained.
At Nenthorn, Fire and Emergency Incident Controller Bobby Lamont says crews have been working on three separate fires, burning in windy conditions. Crews are focusing on structure protection on two of the fires, with limited options for other firefighting until daylight.
Three helicopters, three tankers and five additional crews of firefighters will be brought in this morning.
Three households self-evacuated and Bobby Lamont said if anyone else in the area felt uneasy or unsafe about remaining in their homes, they should also leave.
Nenthorne, Ramrock and Butter and Egg Roads are all closed.
The second fire in the Earthquakes area is estimated to be about 20ha in size. No structures are currently at risk and Commander Phil Marsh said two helicopters and heavy machinery would be working on the fire this morning.
Smoke from the Earthquakes fire is noticeable in Oamaru and prompted several 111 calls earlier this morning. Fire and Emergency advises that if you see or smell smoke and are concerned, please always call 111 so their trained dispatchers in our communications centre can assess whether this is a new fire.

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