Flames 40m high: About 40 properties in the Far North are evacuated as flames continue to spread near Ahipara

New Zealand

The 40-meter-high flames erupted from a wildfire in the bush near Ahipara in the Far North district on Tuesday evening. Video / Northland Rey / Alan Ting Walker / Erica Henson

Flames up to 40 meters high are exploded by a wildfire in the bush near Ahipara in the far north this evening.

The fire makes its way through a scrub in the Gomfields Historic Preserve and spreads east.

About 40 properties in Reef View and Wharo Way have been evacuated by the police and residents are encouraged to go to the local rugby club or Roma Marai if they need help.

The New Zealand Fire and Emergency Service said the fire spread for one kilometer in a kilometer and spread.

Six helicopters and multiple firefighting crews were working to put out the slow-burning flames.

Residents along Foreshore Road, west of Ahipara, near Shipwreck Bay, were ordered to move away from their homes.

Justin Edgecomb, watched, says strong winds feed the fire.

A witness said that the flames were between 30 and 40 meters high. Photo / Dave Clark
A witness said that the flames were between 30 and 40 meters high. Photo / Dave Clark

“It’s a huge fire coming from behind the hill [Ahipara]He told the Herald.

“As I was looking at it, I was very far away but it looked like the flames were probably 30, 40 meters in the air.”

A massive fire burns near Ahipara in the far north. Image / Howard Stone.
A massive fire burns near Ahipara in the far north. Image / Howard Stone.

Dave Clark has a department in Wharo Way, which comes from Foreshore Rd, and says firefighters make sure everyone gets out of the area.

The flames were burning towards the top of the hill behind them, but it appeared to be spreading down towards the coast.

Four helicopters and multiple firefighting crews were working to extinguish a fire near Ahipara. Photo / Geoff Jerome
Four helicopters and multiple firefighting crews were working to extinguish a fire near Ahipara. Photo / Geoff Jerome

Clark says the fire is massive and burns mostly in native jungles and he’s never seen anything like it before.

Clark said there hasn’t been a lot of rain in the area lately and conditions are very dry. The firefighters told him to find another place to sleep tonight.

The fire is burning in the Jomfield Historic Reserve. The attached photo
The fire is burning in the Jomfield Historic Reserve. The attached photo

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Clark says they are picking up water from the ocean and throwing it on the fire.

Edgecombe says police have arrived at the scene and are preventing people from driving to the scene of the fire.

A police spokeswoman said they were contacted around 6.10 pm but were only there to control traffic in the area.

Smoke from the fire can be seen from Whatuwhiwhi, about 50 km from Ahipara. Photo / Shauna Morgan
Smoke from the fire can be seen from Whatuwhiwhi, about 50 km from Ahipara. Photo / Shauna Morgan

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