Open fire season for Southland District

Fire and Emergency New Zealand

Open fire season for Southland District

Southland is now in an open fire season as at 8am, Thursday 21 April, 2022. An open fire season means permits will no longer be required to light open-air fires.

However, this excludes plantation forests, Awarua Wetlands, and Department of Conservation land, which remain in a restricted fire season. A restricted fire season means a permit is required to light a fire in the open air. You can apply for a permit at

District Manager Julian Tohiariki reminds landowners to be vigilant, and to take responsibility when lighting any fires.

"Before you light a fire, make sure to check the conditions on If it’s hot and windy, please postpone your fire until the conditions are less of a risk," Julian says.

Julian Tohiariki says the recent weather conditions have caused this season change.

"Recent rainfall across the district has reduced the risk of wildfires, and we’re comfortable that permits are not needed at this time," he says.

"It has been an unusually dry season, and we appreciate the fact that our communities have understood the need for the prohibited season over the past few weeks."

For more fire safety advice go to