Crews battling a suspicious vegetation fire near Blenheim are facing challenging conditions.

It broke out yesterday on the banks of the Taylor River, next to Wither Hills Farm Park.

It came within five metres of a subdivision, causing 60 homes to be evacuated for a time.

Principal rural fire officer Richard McNamara says 35 firefighters are using three diggers to get the fire out of tree roots and stumps, as well as old buried rubbish.


He says southwest / westerly winds are gusting 40 to 50 kilometres an hour, temperatures are expected to reach the high 20s and humidity is down around 30 to 40 percent.

Richard McNamara is appealing for anyone who knows anything about how the fire started to contact the police.