1 Jan 2013

Dry conditions and fireworks blamed for scrub fires

9:59 am on 1 January 2013

The Fire Service blames extreme dry conditions and fireworks for a number of scrub fires in the South Island overnight.

There were numerous call outs in Southland, Otago and Canterbury.

The Southern Fire Communications centre said a mix of dry spells with bonfires and fireworks, particularly in central Otago, helped to fan the flames.

Twelve appliances fought a large scrub fire in Alexandra - where a member of the public received facial burns.

It was still being dampened down at 5.30am.

The Fire Service in Oamaru has been working since midnight to extinguish a fire in trees at the mouth of the Waitaki River.

And five appliances attended a large scrub fire near Temuka in South Canterbury.

There was also a large scrub fire at Mt Iron at Wanaka.

The Fire Service was called to two house fires in Christchurch and one in Invercargill - where one person was treated for smoke inhalation.