8 February 2019
The New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) has sent another 30 personnel today to help control the raging bushfire in Nelson, almost doubling the number already sent to provide support.
Those sent today will help evacuate residents from Wakefield if that becomes necessary.
Commodore Tony Millar, the Acting Commander Joint Forces, said seven of the 33 NZDF personnel already in Nelson would continue working today with crews from Fire and Emergency New Zealand and Department of Conservation at Redwood Valley Road, while 21 others were working with New Zealand Police to enforce cordons in affected areas and five were supporting Civil Defence and Fire and Emergency New Zealand.
“We are deploying 30 more personnel this morning to assist with a potential evacuation,” Commodore Millar said. “This brings to 63 the number of personnel now assisting with the fires.”
The Nelson Tasman Civil Defence and Emergency Management Group urged Wakefield residents late on Thursday to be prepared to evacuate should weather conditions cause the fire perimeter to expand.