Fire bosses are urging Kiwis to be more responsible with fireworks after their crews attended more than 50 incidents over the weekend.
With Guy Fawkes officially set for tonight, Fire and Emergency New Zealand's Peter Gallagher said they had attended a large number of incidents where fireworks had been misused and caused large fires.
"Fireworks can be fun, but they can also be dangerous and pose a high fire risk, so we need the public to use them responsibly."
Fire investigators deemed fireworks to be the cause of a suspicious scrub fire that resulted in the evacuation of six homes at Lake Hawea, near Wanaka, on Friday.
Five helicopters carrying monsoon buckets and 10 fire appliances were quickly deployed to control the fire which was spread across 10 hectares of hillside forest.
Police were now investigating.
"Used unsafely, fireworks can quickly cause devastating vegetation fires, particularly when conditions are dry and windy.
"Our crews are highly trained and ready to respond, but we need the public to help us keep communities safe by using fireworks safely, and calling us straight away if they see fire."
FIREWORKS SAFETY TIPS:
• Don't light fireworks in windy or dry conditions.
• Carefully read and follow the manufacturer's instructions before using any fireworks.
• Light your fireworks in a wide-open area, away from anything that could catch fire, like dry grass, leaves or crops, or flammable gases or liquids.
• Keep a bucket of water, hose or fire extinguisher handy.
• Point fireworks at the sky, not your mates.
• Refer to your local bylaws for the rules around using fireworks in your area. In many places, you're only allowed to light fireworks on private property.