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Fire ban to be lifted following the shift to COVID-19 Alert Level 3

The fire ban currently in place in the Nelson Tasman region will be lifted as the country transitions to COVID-19 Alert level 3.

From Wednesday 29 April 2020, residents in the rural areas of Nelson and Tasman regions may apply for fire permits through If a new permit application requires a field inspection, this may not be possible in all situations under level 3. Existing permits that were suspended back in January will be reinstated with permit holders notified by email and or text.

The decision to implement the local fire ban was made under section 91 of the Civil Defence and Emergency Management Act.

A number of rural properties have undertaken considerable clearing of vegetation during lockdown, and lifting the ban will allow those residents with a fire permit to burn this vegetation in a controlled manner. In some parts of the region, council restrictions to minimise air pollution come into effect on 1 June 2020.

Principal Rural Fire Officer, Ian Reade, is asking people to be careful. “We appreciate that a large number of people have done a lot of gardening during the lockdown period, and some are wanting to burn this vegetation. People can expect to see smoke in rural areas from these fires. If another suitable way of disposing of the vegetation is available we are still encouraging people to take that option during level 3”.

For information on how to conduct your burn safely go to

Group Controller Roger Ball wanted to thank everyone for their understanding during this time. “This has been an extremely challenging time for us all, and we want to thank everyone for not putting additional demands on our Fire and Emergency team. As we move into Alert level 3 we need to remain vigilant, protect our bubbles and stay home as much as possible.”


Media Contact:
Nelson Tasman Civil Defence and Emergency Management 
Public Information Manager - Paul Shattock 021 225 2568

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