Scrub Fire at Taupō: Thomas Firth (left) and Lana Muldoon
The Bay of Plenty Fire District including South Waikato has moved to a prohibited fire season. The prohibited fire season came into effect from Tuesday, 25 January 2022. This means everyone in the Bay of Plenty can no longer light an open-air fire. All fire permits previously granted will be suspended, and new permits will not be issued while the ban is in place. For more information go to www.checkitsalright.nz
Please call in any smoke you observe in the neighbourhood and surrounding area. Better to err on the side of caution than lose property or some of our native bush and wildlife. Please also continue to be aware of fire and permit restrictions throughout the fire season.
Various brigade members have recently been attending formal training courses including the completion of crew leader requirements for two of the brigade’s younger members. Congratulations Leah and Thomas! We also recently hosted a portable pump course at the Lake Ōkāreka station which was well attended by fire fighters from across Region 2 (Ngā Tai ki te Puku, Central North Island) and run by three trainers from the National Training Centre who provided positive feedback on the Lake Ōkāreka station facilities.
A recent scrub fire in Taupō was also added to our ‘to do list’ with four members from Ōkāreka attending on what was a very hot day. The contribution of the crew was acknowledged and commended by the other brigades involved. Thank you to Leah, Thomas, Amber and Lana for volunteering their Sunday to attend this incident.
With the summer months and holiday season still in full swing, it may pay to be aware when cresting the hill coming into Ōkāreka from the Blue Lake that there are a lot more walkers, runners and cyclists on the road verge. Unfortunately, there also seems to be more cars in the areas doing burnouts and driving at speed through the village and surrounding roads.
A special thank you to those members of the community who have offered to mow the lawns and weed the gardens around the station. This help is greatly appreciated!
With February just around the corner, universities will soon be starting up again and we will be losing a number of our members from the area during semester time. If you live locally and haven’t gotten around to joining the brigade, then now is the perfect opportunity to assist with maintaining brigade numbers throughout the year. Full training and PPE are provided. Please drop by the station on a Wednesday evening at 7:30pm or give me a call on 021 890 508. You can also visit our website for more information: www.okarekaruralfire.co.nz
Chief Fire Officer