The current fire danger is

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Having a Fire


Department of Conservation land is fire by permit only all year round.

Open Fire Season:

A fire can be lit in the open air without a Fire Permit. However, full responsibility is with the person lighting the fire to take all precautions and make sure any fire is safe and secure. Open Fire Seasons occur when conditions are cool and damp. This is generally over the winter months

Restricted Fire Season:

Restrictions are placed on some burning activities. You may still be able to have a fire provided you obtain a fire permit. To check if you require a fire permit for your fire, refer to fire zone. Restricted fire seasons - occur when vegetation dries out due to wind and sunny days, increasing the risk of a wildfires occurring. Restricted Fire Seasons generally occur any time from September to April. However it’s not unheard of for a Restricted Fire Season to occur during the winter months.

Prohibited Fire Season:

A Prohibited Fire Season means no fires are permitted as the fire danger is too high. During a Prohibited Fire Season only gas barbeques can be used. If you are reported lighting a fire during a Prohibited Fire Season the Northern Fire and Emergency New Zealand Principal Rural Fire Officer is obliged under the Fire and Emergency Act 2017 to put it out. A Prohibited Fire Season occurs when conditions are very dry. This is generally early to mid summer. The Prohibited Fire Season is advertised in the media and “Total Fire Ban” signs are erected within the District.

Special Permit for a Cultural Fire:

A Special Permit may be issued for a Cultural Fire at the discretion of the Principal Rural Fire Officer with strict conditions attached.

A Cultural Fire includes a Hangi or Umu.

Conditions for a Cultural Fire;

  1. Two people in attendance at all times.
  2. Hangi / Umu to be located at least 100 mtres from bush, scrub, forest, or reserve. 
  3. Wet down the area surrounding the Hangi /Umu as required. 
  4. Sufficient water supply available to prevent a breakout of fire. 
  5. Light the Hangi / Umu before 9am. 
  6. Ensure the fire is fully extinguished before leaving unattended. 
  7. Wind strength below 5km / hour.

To apply for a permit please visit or call 0800 920 029 and ask to speak
to a Principal Rural Fire Officer.

Please keep our communities and Volunteer Fire Fighters safe by acting responsibly.


Fire Permits

Can I light a fire in the open air? 

Can I light a fire without a permit?

It depends on the fire danger status at the time. As well as the suppression of fires, Rural Fire authorities have the responsibility of preventing fires. They do this by monitoring the fire danger and declaring certain fire seasons. The fire season determines whether a permit is required or not.

Can I have a hangi without a permit?

It depends on the fire danger status and the fire season - this will determine whether a permit is required or not.

If in doubt to what the fire season status is please consult the website or call and speak to Principal Rural Fire Officer.

As a general guide, caution is required from the months of October through to April.