Fires and smoke at Waikawa Beach

It used to be that all outdoor fires were prohibited at Waikawa Beach, but that all changed in March 2019:

Fire and Emergency New Zealand have advised that as of Wednesday, 27 March 2019, an open fire season is in place for the Horowhenua District.

Note: All beach and sand dune areas remain in a Prohibited Fire Season (Total Fire Ban) 365 days a Year.

Horizons Regional Council burning info.
Horizons Regional Council burning info.

Please be considerate. Don’t light outdoor fires if you can avoid it. Before you light a fire check the current wind direction and any expected changes. Don’t let a fire burn overnight or for several days. Don’t light a fire if the smoke will drift onto a neighbouring property. Warn your neighbours beforehand so they can close windows, bring in washing and so on in case the wind changes.

That means that provided you first check the fire season status and follow certain requirements, you are now allowed to have an outdoor fire on your own property provided the smoke does not go beyond the boundaries of your own property.

To see what you can burn check out this summary (PDF). The full rules can be found in Chapter 15.5 of the One Plan (PDF) (see page 15-11).

Smoke nuisance

Horizons Regional Council point out that smoke from open fires must not go beyond the boundaries of your own property.

Horowhenua District Council confirmed they manage smoke nuisance complaints and these need to be phoned through at the time it is happening. 06 366 0999

Horizons Regional Council One Plan 15.5.
Horizons Regional Council One Plan 15.5.

All fire-related activities are managed by Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ). Information from FENZ about fire seasons, the current season in your location, how to safely light a fire, fire types and how to apply for a permit can be found at (if you do not have an internet connection please phone 0800 656 628 for assistance).

It is an offence if you knowingly or recklessly light, or allow another person to light, a fire in open air in an area that is in a Restricted Fire Season unless under a permit issued by Fire and Emergency New Zealand and in accordance with any conditions of the permit.

More information

Note: all this info around fires, smoke etc is a horrible mess to determine. Fires, smoke, burning etc seem to be ‘controlled’ by 3 different agencies. Discovering what is actually allowed, by whom, and who handles complaints or problems has been an arduous task. We’ve given you the best information we’ve been able to establish. If you find something is incorrect (and can back that up with a web page or other source) please let us know.

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