25 Jan 2010

Waipukurau fire now under control

10:37 am on 25 January 2010

More than 30 people evacuated from houses near a large fire in the Hawke's Bay town of Waipukurau are returning to their homes.

They were told to leave at about 3am on Monday after an abandoned hospital building caught fire at about 1.15am, because of the risk of smoke inhalation and asbestos.

The Fire Service says the fire is now well under control. It believes the blaze may have been deliberately lit.

It says there's now little risk of inhalation smoke or asbestos.

An evacuation centre was set up in the Memorial Hall.

The Salvation Army is feeding them and the fire fighters.

The cause of the fire is not known. No-one has been hurt.