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23 Feb 2018 1:44
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  •   Home > News > Accident and Emergency

    Chatham Islands fire contained

    The fire on the Chatham Islands that burned through 3000 hectares has been contained, and now an investigation into its cause will begin.


    The large fire on the Chatham Islands that is estimated to have burned through 3000 hectares has been fully contained, and now an investigation into how it started will begin.

    The blaze, which broke out last Thursday, ripped through land roughly equivalent to about 3000 rugby fields.

    Two helicopters with monsoon buckets worked on the fire, supported by ground crews, many of them from the New Zealand mainland.

    Principal Rural Fire Officer, Craig Cottrill, said on Tuesday that helicopter pilots put in 11-hour days and ground crews were engaged in "hard, dirty work, digging out smouldering areas".

    "We are seeing less and less smoke each day," he said.

    "Even though it is extremely dry, rain this morning helped dampen things."

    A senior fire investigator arrived at the Chatham Islands on Tuesday to start the investigation into the cause of the fire.

    Mr Cottrill said the emergency response was a solid community effort to get the fire under control and put it out.

    The fire was on private land containing regenerating and established native vegetation, but only about 1km from Department of Conservation land.

    The Chatham Islands are about 800km east of New Zealand and are home to around 600 people.


    NZN




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