It started on Tuesday about 18km away from some sparks caused by a disc-harrow hitting a stone.
Out of control within minutes and that’s still the situation.
2500 people evacuated, only one property lost due to the sparsely populated nature of the inland region. Mostly farms and lifestyle blocks and heaps of commercial pine forests.
Everything’s tinder-dry – the last decent rain was back in December.
Spread over 2100 hectares to the north i.e. us and the evacuation zone is about 4km away, the exclusion zone about 3km.
The Moutere Highway is closed as is SH6 to Christchurch. There’s a 90km detour in place, 60km along narrow, winding roads through the Motueka Valley.
Here’s a good information source:
If the wind picks up again and turns northerly, we’re good, but Wakefield isn’t.
If it goes southerly and picks up to the gales we had 2 weeks back, Wakefield’s good and we’re less so, but we’re at the end of the peninsular, so no worries.
Unless some idiot flicks a ciggie butt out the car window somewhere.
At the moment, you’d think there was a heavy fog, but it’s smoke. The visibility was down to under 2km yesterday and it’s not recommended to do any outdoor exercise.
So no biking for a bit.
This was Tuesday
This was yesterday. And today.