High winds preventing Nelson residents from going home

Author
NZ Herald,
Section
National,
Publish Date
Saturday, 16 February 2019, 12:43p.m.
A risk of flare-ups is keeping people out of their homes for another day. (Photo / NZ Herald)
A risk of flare-ups is keeping people out of their homes for another day. (Photo / NZ Herald)

High winds have forced Civil Defence to stop the remaining Nelson residents going back to their homes in the fire-affected Pigeon Valley today.

Civil Defence group controller Angus McKay said wind gusts of up 81km/h this morning posed too much of a risk to allow people into the area.

"We have been watching weather and wind conditions closely overnight and, together with Fire and Emergency New Zealand, have made the call to suspend restricted access today.

"This also means that planned conditional re-entry for the remaining Pigeon Valley Rd residents, (including Sharp Rd) has been cancelled today.

"The risk of significant flare-ups and our ability to evacuate people at short notice has been the primary consideration behind making this decision," McKay said.

He said police and Defence Force staff would maintain cordons in the area. Fire and Emergency New Zealand staff would monitor the fireground closely and respond to flare-ups and hot spots.

"Those who are already back in their homes are reminded to be vigilant, dial 111 immediately if they see any fire and must remain prepared to evacuate at short notice if required," Fire and Emergency New Zealand Area Commander Grant Haywood said.

The Sunday Session

The Sunday Session

9a.m. - 12p.m.