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Pigeon Valley Fire update 8 0945 & Feb 2019

  • No change to the approximate fire area overnight, still covers 1900 ha, with an approximately 22 km perimeter.
  • FENZ staff will be joined by firefighting crews from the New Zealand Defence Force and the Department of Conservation today
  • Rabbit Island fire contained, mop-up work now underway
  • Revised number of evacuated properties, now 182 affecting approximately 400 residents
  • One dwelling confirmed as lost at this time

Map of the fire area

Civil Defence Emergency Management Group Controller Roger Ball says "The priority remains protecting people, their property and critical infrastructure. We are working closely with Fire  Emergency New Zealand and Police in their efforts to both control the fire and we are looking at options for some residents to be escorted beyond the perimeter to assess their properties." 

Fire and Emergency New Zealand Incident controller John Sutton said it has been a good night with firefighters working throughout to try and contain the fire but it is still not contained as of yet.

“We’ve had favourable weather and the fire hasn’t progressed overnight. We have around 100 firefighters, 22 helicopters and 2 winged planes currently working. We’ve had no injuries and no one is in danger but unfortunately, we have had one confirmed loss of property."

“Today we are expecting similar weather as yesterday, which should help ongoing efforts to contain the fire.
“Our focus today is to continue to work to contain the fire in critical areas – along Sharp Road and Pigeon Valley South Rd, as well as the top end of Eves Valley Rd. However, the direction of the fire is hard to predict – it can change quickly depending on the weather conditions and temperature.

“At the moment we are focusing on containment. We had a number of forestry crews helping us out overnight. We have NZDF and DOC crews arriving today and more Fire and Emergency crews from outside the region are also providing support.”
Keep out of the fire area

Hard cordons are in place at the locations listed below. Please stay out of the affected areas for your own safety and so you don't hinder the fire fighting effort. 

Checks within the affected areas are planned to commence today by FENZ and a building inspector to assess fire affected areas and ensure these are safe before allowing people to re-enter.

Rabbit Island Fire contained

Rabbit Island fire broke out yesterday afternoon has been contained and mop up work is now underway.

Evacuations and welfare

Approximately 182 properties have been evacuated.
The Civil Defence Centre at St John’s Church, Wakefield remains open. The Centre can provide welfare information and help with accommodation for those who need it.  They can also accept pets.
All residents who have evacuated or self-evacuated are asked to register. For those who can’t make it to the centre, or don’t need additional assistance please call 03 543 8400 to register by phone.

Welfare visits

For people who have been affected, Civil Defence teams are preparing to further assess welfare needs. The visits will begin when it is safe to get crews and residents near to affected properties. This may be some days away.

Animal welfare

Livestock needing to be evacuated due to the Pigeon Valley Fire can be accommodated at the Richmond Showgrounds.

Horses, sheep and goats can be accommodated in empty stables – use the Campground Gate to the Showgrounds and follow the road to the stable blocks. Please leave your name and contact number on the stable door and provide food for your animals. There is water available on site.

For sheep and cattle – please call the contact centre on 03 543 8400 and we can help make arrangements for you to get access to the racecourse oval to accommodate them.

Pets can be taken to the Welfare Centre in Wakefield if required.

Confirmed road closures / cordons

Hard cordons are now in place and the following roads are closed.

  • Pigeon Valley Road at the fire station to the last driveway before the seal in Dovedale (approx. 381 Dovedale Road).
  • Moutere Highway from Redwood Rd to Waimea West Road intersection
  • Eves Valley Road
  • Teapot Road
  • Golden Hills Road at Moutere Highway intersection
  • Golden Hills Road at Challies Road intersection
  • The intersection of Redwood Valley Road and Redwood Valley Lane
  • Green Acres Road
  • Mailing Road

Changes to school bus routes

School Bus pickup points are changing. Pick up times will remain as normal.

  • Redwood Valley / Redwood Lane, Malling Road & Greenacres Road: The bus will pick up at each of the intersections with the Moutere Highway.
  • Teapot Valley and Eves Valley: The bus will pick up at each of the intersections with Waimea West road.
  • Pigeon Valley: The bus will pick you up at the Wakefield Village Green.

Offers of Assistance

Thank you for the many offers of help we’ve received for people affected by the Pigeon Valley fire. We have collated offers made so far and will be in touch if we need your assistance.

Further updates

Updates will be available on the Nelson Tasman Civil Defence website and facebook page, both Nelson City and Tasman District Council facebook pages and websites, and through BrianFm radio at 105.6 FM.

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