Scrub fires that broke out at West Auckland's Waikumete Cemetery are under control but not extinguished.

A fire and emergency service spokesman told the Herald that crews were still at the scene.

"We're still there, the fire is now contained and almost extinguished," he said.

The spokesman said they were called to the fire - about the size of four rugby fields - at 12.15pm and confirmed trains were halted on the western line.


"Trains (were) stopped on the western trunk line due to the close proximity of the tracks that they were working.

"They also turned power off to the overhead power lines," he said.

Scrub fires are burning in Waikumete Cemetery. Photo / Google Earth
Scrub fires are burning in Waikumete Cemetery. Photo / Google Earth

Witness Ron Paul told Newstalk ZB he watched the fire from his rooftop, and said he saw thick smoke billowing from a group of trees.

"It was blazing for a while and it seems to be out now, just a little bit of smouldering."

Paul said fire came close to a rail line but was pushed away by the wind.

"It was actually up from the railway lines and the wind was moving up towards the cemetery," he said.

Paul said firefighters appear to have the blaze under control.

"It's not as thick smoke as it was."


Auckland Council's manager of cemeteries Catherine Moore said the fire is not threatening any buildings.

"The cemetery hasn't been evacuated, however we are monitoring the situation closely," she said.

Moore encouraged people to keep away from the area.

A worker at the nearby Caltex on West Coast Rd said he could see smoke coming out of woods in the cemetery.

The 108ha cemetery in Glen Eden is New Zealand's largest.