Many Hawke's Bay residents will have nervously watched the progress of the large fire north of Napier these past few days.

If not online through news organisations such as Hawke's Bay Today, then in real time, as plumes of thick grey smoke rose on the horizon above Tangoio Settlement Rd, about 25km north of Napier.

Right now, how the fire started is irrelevant - it is still being fought, and we are grateful no one has been killed and homes have not been lost.

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Given the tragedy that rages on in Australia right now, in some ways we should count ourselves lucky that only 300 hectares of forestry have been destroyed.

The companies who own the land may have a different view, given they will be eyeing a large financial loss on their planted investment.

A water tanker and Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) truck at the scene. Photo / Warren Buckland
A water tanker and Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) truck at the scene. Photo / Warren Buckland

Pan Pac has lost 200ha of 5-year-old trees that had another 25 years to go before maturity.

The fire started within a day or so of the disappearance of the crimson/orange hue that tinged Hawke's Bay, as a legacy of the Australian fires.

The last of the haze was blown out of town by the same wind that has caused havoc for firefighters these past few days.

It has regularly gusted up to 100km/h - on Monday morning a meteorologist was blown away to learn of a 196km/h blast on Sunday night.

The entire region should be on notice that dry and windy conditions are a potent combination.

Check your old fires, even if they were lit months ago,

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Trevor Mitchell, the principal rural fire officer for Hawke's Bay, has warned that people need to check any fires that have been lit recently, even if it was months ago.

Ken Cooper, fire and emergency area commander for Hawke's Bay, has had reassuring words for residents wondering what happens if another big fire breaks out.

And given as of yesterday morning there had been 13 fires in a day, it is valid concern.

But it was comforting to hear there is safety in our firefighting numbers.

"There are more than 900 firefighters in Hawke's Bay, so we have good resources," said Cooper.

For now, firefighters are working hard to put the fire out.

And although thankfully we have no reason to fear anything of Australian proportions, we should still remain vigilant nervous about the imminent danger from windy, dry conditions, with a hint of nerves. Fire is nothing to be blase about.