Rain has brought some relief to Central Otago with the area being moved from a total ban on all fires to a restricted season today.
The central zone includes Alexandra, Clyde, Cromwell, Wanaka, Lake Hawea, Naseby, Ranfurly, Kurow, Otematata, Omarama and Middlemarch.
There has been a total fire ban in the area since December 18 last year. The shift to a restricted season begins from 8am.
Deputy Principal Rural Fire Officer Bobby Lamont said recent rainfall has reduced the fire danger levels which means the area can now join the rest of the Otago District in a restricted fire season.
"The restricted fire season means people in the area may be able to light an outdoor fire if they apply for a permit and follow the conditions listed on it.
"Being in a restricted season also gives land managers and contractors the ability to undertake any necessary fire-related work on their properties, if they have a fire permit."
Lamont said they still need communities to remain vigilant about wildfire risks.
"We are likely to see high temperatures and a dryer than usual summer so people should think carefully about the activities they are planning.
"If the danger is red, keep your tools and machinery in the shed to avoid a spark and starting a fire."
It comes after a large wildfire near Waipori Falls in Otago last month when 50ha of tussock and scrub caught fire near Waipori Falls Rd on December 15.
Three crews from Waihola, one crew from Outram and a Dunedin Command Unit attended.
Fire and Emergency New Zealand will continue to monitor fire conditions in case changing weather conditions necessitate a move back to a prohibited fire season, Lamont said.
• If you're planning a fire, click here to check the local fire danger and apply for a fire permit.