Fires in urban areas

When a fire ban is imposed for rural fires, the ban generally includes urban areas. If there are no restrictions, you can burn rubbish, preferably in a fireplace, barbecue or incinerator. The fire must be controlled, and smoke, ash and odour must not cause a nuisance to other residents. Causing a nuisance to other residents is an offence under the Council bylaws.

What can I burn?

It is recommended that only small quantities of dry garden refuse and household paper, etc. should be burned. If the Council is called to a property because of a smoke nuisance, the fire will be put out, a charge may be made, and other legal action may be considered.

What shouldn’t I burn?

Freshly cut grass, hedging, trees, etc should not be burned because of the large amount of smoke they create. Products such as plastic, tins, treated timber and car tyres that contain noxious elements and/or create offensive smells also should not be burned.

What should I do if my neighbour’s fire is causing a nuisance?

In most cases, talking to your neighbour and asking them to put the fire out until conditions are more suitable (such as when the breeze does not blow smoke in your direction) will solve the problem.

If your neighbour’s indoor fire is causing you concern, call the Council on 06 323 0000. A staff member will investigate as soon as possible. While it is likely the fire will be out by the time of the visit, discussion with your neighbour will hopefully prevent a reoccurrence of the problem.

If it is an outdoor fire that you have concerns about, please contact Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

Fire permits

All fire permitting and notification about location and seasonal restrictions is now managed by Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ). To find out more you can contact Fire and Emergency New Zealand.