Port Hills: Fire crews sent to investigate after reports of smoke

Smoke seen near Christchurch’s Port Hills is believed to be from controlled burn-offs in surrounding areas.

Shortly after 3pm on Friday, fire crews rushed to the hills after reports of smoke in the area.

A faint volunteer fire siren could be heard at the Christchurch Adventure Park around that time and multiple fire engines could be heard shortly after, a reporter on scene said.

At 3.40pm, Fire and Emergency said crews had not found any signs of an active fire on the Port Hills.

“We believe the smoke to be from controlled burn-offs that have been taking place in the wider area (not on the Port Hills themselves, where there is a total fire ban in place).

“Thanks to everyone who was vigilant and called 111 this afternoon. It’s the right thing to do. We are always ready to respond.”

On social media, Christchurch residents said there was a strong smell of smoke in locations such as Northwood, Hoon Hay and Barrington.

Someone said there was a “bit of” smoke and ash in Allandale.

“I drove from Avonside to St Martins and could see it all over the Port Hills 30 minutes ago. Now I’m home in Avonside and can smell it,” another said.

Residents are remaining vigilant after a massive fire broke out on the hills on 14 February.

That fire quickly grew to 650 hectares in size and saw residents evacuated for days.

Police are still investigating how that fire started.

According to the news on Radio New Zealand

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