Fire and Emergency NZ are urging people to give them a heads-up if they're planning on having a hangi over the festive period.
Just two hours into his shift, by 8am today, FENZ northern shift manager Paul Radden said crews around the Upper North Island, including Auckland, Waikato, Rotorua and Bay of Plenty, had attended countless call-outs to incidents which were simply people having a hangi in their backyard.
He said while they had been notified by about 200 people in regards to today, they had wasted a large amount of time sending crews to calls by worried members of the public after they've spotted smoke.
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While FENZ appreciated the calls - and would rather be told than not - it could be rectified by simply being given prior warning to a hangi being prepared.
"If you're having a hangi or an Umu then give us a call and let us know because people see smoke or something coming out behind a house and they're not sure if it's a house fire and they're doing the right thing by calling it in, it's great, but if people could let us know it just saves us tying up a resource."
Parts of the country, including Hamilton, are currently in the middle of water restrictions due to the lack of rain.
"We encourage people to call us and let us know as it's a safety thing."
* Radden asked anyone planning on having a hangi or Umu can to contact FENZ on 09 486 7948