Preparing for Animal Evacuations During Fires

The recent events in Australia have shown us the devastating impact that fire can have on animals and livestock. The Waimak Lifestyle Block Group and Waimakariri Civil Defence are hosting a meeting to establish a community-based response plan for emergencies, such as fires.

The meeting hopes to address the question, "If a serious fire threatened your property, would you be able to quickly and safely evacuate your animals?"

As part of the response plan, organisers hope to establish a database of go-to people in the event of an emergency and resources such as transport, safe-havens, feed and other equipment.

Councillor Niki Mealings coordinates the Waimak Lifestyle Block Group and urges people with animals on their property to attend, "Just by having a plan in place and making some simple preparations, we can help ensure our animals are safe and looked after when an emergency strikes."

She's says the meeting will be valuable to anyone on a block with animals that might need help, but also anyone with skills or resources that could help in the event of an emergency.

Speakers will include Brennan Wiremu from Waimakariri Civil Defence and Sarah Lodge who recently assisted with animal evacuations during the Australian Fires.

Representatives from the North Canterbury Rural Support Trust, Neighbourhood Support and Waimakariri District Council Animal Management Services will also be present to answer any questions and help out.

The meeting will be at 7.30pm, Tuesday 18 February at the Ohoka Hall (Mill Road opposite the Ohoka Domain).