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Ten fire crews still at work near Middlemarch

Waitaki App

Staff Reporter

12 March 2024, 12:18 AM

Ten fire crews still at work near MiddlemarchFire crews are still hard at work to extinguish a vegetation fire at Nenthorn, near Middlemarch. Photo: Otago - Fire and Emergency/Facebook

One resident remains out of their home, as firefighters continue work on extinguishing a fire at Nenthorne, between Middlemarch and Palmerston, in the Waitaki.

Three households self-evacuated after the fire took hold overnight on Sunday (March 10), and also spent last night in alternative accommodation.

Today (Tuesday, March 12) 10 fire crews (35 firefighters), supported by a digger, continue to work on extinguishing the vegetation fire, which spanned 78 hectares.

Two crews monitored the fire ground overnight last night and put out hot spots.

No homes were lost in the fire, but a small number of farm buildings were destroyed or damaged and crews are overhauling burnt buildings and felling dangerous trees nearby, Fire and Emergency New Zealand incident controller Bobby Lamont said in a lunchtime update.

There are deep underground fires yet to be extinguished underneath several large stands of trees.

"Most residents in the area who self-evacuated on the night of the fire (10 March) have been allowed home," he said.

"One resident is still unable to return home but we’re hoping they should be able to later today."

Bobby Lamont says Nenthorne, Ramrock, and Butter and Egg roads remain closed, although it is expected they will be able to open later today.

Fire and Emergency New Zealand (Fenz) has handed over the fireground at the second fire in Earthquakes near Duntroon to Department of Conservation fire crews to monitor and mop up.