As the hot, dry summer rolls on with no significant rain forecast, Fire and Emergency New Zealand has introduced fire restrictions for the Whanganui and South Taranaki districts.

The restricted fire season came into force at 8am on Monday, February 11, and means permits are required to light fires in the open air in the urban area of Whanganui and all of South Taranaki district. It also covers rural areas of Whanganui including, but not limited to, Maxwell, Kai Iwi, Brunswick, Westmere, Rapanui, Otamatea, Mosston, Kaitoke, Fordell, Upokongaro, Mangamahu, Parikino and Papaiti.

Deputy principal rural fire officer Gavin Pryce said the Whanganui district had not had any major rural fire incidents so far this summer.

"But the restrictions are an indication that things are drying out and the weather forecast isn't indicating much moisture," Pryce said.

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Under the restrictions, permits are needed for campfires, bonfires, burn piles, crop residue/stubble burns, land clearing burns, windrows and some other types of fires.

If FENZ conditions are met, permits are not required for gas-operated appliances, charcoal barbecues or grills, wood fire pizza ovens, chiminea, cultural fires (hāngī, umu, lovo), braziers, fire pits/bowls, open drum incinerators and manufactured incinerators. More information about the conditions for these types of fires is online at http://checkitsalright.nz/

Permits are required for fires on conservation land.

For more details about the restrictions and to apply for a permit, go to http://checkitsalright.nz/