Ten homes in Auckland's Greenhithe were evacuated while firefighters battled to contain a 5ha vegetation fire on Monday, police said.
Eight Fire and Emergency crews and a helicopter with a monsoon bucket responded to the blaze on Upper Harbour Drive at 12.15pm. The road was closed between Greenhithe Rd and Emily Lane, and is expected to re-open at 8pm.
Plumes of white smoke could be seen as far as Auckland's CBD, and residents in Hobsonville Point reported smelling the smoke.
Shift manager Paul Radden told the Herald the operation was "quite complex" with Covid-19 restrictions, as Auckland remains in alert level 3.
Marie Mitchell said she saw flames leaping around 20m in the air from her home on Kyle Rd in Upper Harbour.
"There is a lot of bush around that area, which is why they will be worried and why a helicopter is out checking the perimeter, and there are loads of sirens," she told the Herald.
"There are houses on large sections with trees so it could spread easily."
Police said evacuated residents were allowed back into their homes at around 3pm, when the fire was contained.
All firefighting operations will wind down at nightfall and one appliance will check for hotspots at around 4am on Tuesday, a Fenz spokesperson told the Herald. The helicopter has now been retired.
It is unclear what caused the blaze.
Just before 5.30pm on Monday, a second, smaller vegetation fire broke out in Whenuapai - around 10km away.
Firefighters were quick to contain the blaze on Dale Rd. Crews responded from Kumeu, Parnell, Waitakere and Whenuapai.