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Pigeon Valley Fire Update 19, 9 February 2019, 0030hrs

The following is a summary of the current status of the Civil Defence emergency in the Nelson Tasman Region.

Walters Bluff fire:

A fire broke out around 1500 hours above Iwa Road. Three helicopters, 2 fixed-wing planes, 4 appliances and 5 tankers attended the fire which is now under control. A crew will be present overnight.

Pigeon Valley fire:

The fire is currently burning, estimated to be 2100ha with a perimeter of 27km. Fire observers in helicopters have been in position over Wakefield. Drones will be doing further assessment and monitoring of the fire line through the smoke.
During the day, resources have been:

  • 22 helicopters
  • 2 fixed-wing planes
  • 141 personnel
  • 15 heavy machines (excavators and dozers)

There will be over 50 personnel fighting the fire overnight.

Wakefield Evacuations:

There are two evacuation areas are currently in place for Wakefield residents.

  1. Residents north of SH6 between Pigeon Valley Road and Simmonds Road.
  2. Residents in the area bordered by Barton Lane, Higgins Road and Baigent Valley Road.

Around 860 properties have been evacuated from this area. Police have cordons and security patrols in place.

Civil Defence Centre Registrations:

Wider Wakefield Area - 863 people have registered with the Civil Defence Centre. If you have evacuated and have not registered, please do so by phoning 03 543 8400. Mobile numbers and email addresses are appreciated.

The centre at Saxton Stadium is open overnight for affected residents.

Nelson – 35 people self-evacuated due to the fire at Walters Bluff. These residents have subsequently been allowed to return to their homes.

Community meetings:

Two meetings will be held on Saturday 9 February:

  • 0900 hours - Appleby School, 28 Moutere Hwy
  • 1100 hours - Hope Church, 114 Ranzau Road (note: this meeting will focus on Wakefield)

Health and Welfare advice:

People are advised to access their normal GP in the first instance, and use the emergency department for emergencies.

Stress and anxiety:

Anxiety is very common during an emergency event such as an uncontrolled fire. This is a normal response to a very stressful situation. Talking to people and helping others can be both therapeutic and useful.

Please look out for your neighbours, especially the elderly, those in ill-health, and those who live alone.

If you need further support for yourself or for others, call your general practice or Healthline on 0800 611 116.

Further Nelson Marlborough District Health Board advice can be found online

Mayoral Relief Fund:

If you want to donate to the Mayoral Relief fund, please use the following details:
Tasman District Council, ASB Bank Ltd, Nelson Commercial Banking

Bank/branch account number: 12-3193-0002048-03

Please include in the reference "relief fund" and your name and contact phone number.

Animal Welfare:

Specialist vet and animal rescue teams have been checking animals on properties in the Redwood Valley area this evening.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is coordinating Animal Welfare efforts supported by SPCA and Massey University Veterinary Emergency Response Team.

The teams were able to access the properties under the direct supervision of Police and Fire and Emergency (FENZ) checked animals for injuries and ensured they had access to sufficient water and feed for their immediate needs.

Controller Rob Smith acknowledged that everyone who had been evacuated was keen to get back and check on their homes and animals themselves.

“We had been working on a plan for managed, restricted access today but because of the change in fire conditions and the fresh evacuations, it wasn’t possible for us to allow people back to check on their own stock today.

“If conditions allow, we aim to be able to allow restricted residential access at the weekend and will advise residents directly if this will be possible.”

Anyone with concerns about animals in the fire area should phone MPI on 0800 008 333.  

Use the same number to report an animal in trouble or if you are worried about animals in the fire zone.


Road closures


Pigeon Valley at SH6 intersection.

Moutere Highway from Redwood Road to Waimea West Road intersection.

Golden Hill Rd @ Moutere Highway intersection. 

Eves Valley Road

Teapot Valley Road

Golden Hills Rd @ Challies Road intersection.

Redwood valley rd and redwood Valley lane.

Barton Lane

Symmonds Rd

Arnold Lane

Dovedale Road - Pidgeon Valley

Bird Lane

Franklin Close

Martin Avenue

SH6 from Barton Lane to Baigent Valley Road

88 valley road outside  number 66

Gibbs Valley and Church Valley Roads intersection

Cycle Track off Higgins Road

Bird Road at corner of Bird/Higgins Road

Bridge Valley and Mt Heslington where they intersect Higgins Road

Barton Lane and Higgins Road intersection (blocking  access on to Barton Lane)




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