With daylight savings upon us, we start to enjoy warmer and longer days.

The sun shining on the weekend allows us all to spend a bit of time in the gardens clearing and tidying the growth and weeds that have been accumulating for the past few months.

Keeping long grasses and vegetation near buildings maintained gives your property a much better chance of surviving a fire by minimising the amount of burnable fuel that can carry fire to your home.

Dried leaves in your gutters are also an easy source of ignition from embers traveling in the air from a nearby fire. If possible keep these clear and engage the help of a tradesman if required to ensure you are not putting yourself at any risk of injury by falling from a height.

What to do with all of the garden waste once you have finished tidying?

As a lot of us are in a semi-rural area it is highly recommended you visit www.checkitsalright.nz before you decide to burn off any trimmings.

The site guides you through what you can do at your address and assists in applying for a permit should one be required. 

It also assists with:

• Displaying the current fire danger rating for your planned burn day.

• Assists by giving you some suggestions as to choosing a safe site, and soil types, to avoid burning on.

• How to look after and put out your bonfire.

• How to be courteous to your neighbours by considering the smoke caused by green or wet materials.

An unplanned bonfire can go wrong and spread without cautious care and planning.  With some planning any potential incidents can be safely avoided.

Jamie Shaw

Deputy Chief Fire Officer

Waitakere Volunteer Fire Brigade

Phone 09 810 9251