“Very challenging conditions, world class response” Adventure Park infrastructure closed until further notice

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch
Feb 15, 2024 |

George Heard/ Pool


Fire and Emergency’s Brad Mosby has commended the relentless efforts of firefighting crews and support teams battling the blaze in Port Hills.

“The fire is still not considered to be contained at this stage. It is clear that this fire is going to be a long-duration event,” Mosby said highlighting the ongoing challenges.

With 27 trucks, 14 helicopters, and two fixed-wing aircraft currently deployed, operations are in full swing to combat the inferno.

Mosby said fire retardant drops will continue well into the evening.

“We are planning for the same resources to be in operation tomorrow, as well as additional resources brought in for our incident management teams,” he added.

Mosby said even though the smoke was dissipating, there was still a significant amount of work ahead for the crews.

“Our crews are all local at the stage. They take a lot of ownership and they want to be here to put that fire out. They really care deeply about the community, but we are working in the background looking at other resources from around the country to bring in, and that’s likely to be incident management team, from tomorrow.”

George Heard/ Pool

Despite the fire encroaching into the adventure park, Mosby reassured that efforts were underway to safeguard infrastructure, with “no reported damage” at this stage.

However, the park issued a short statement saying “the Christchurch Adventure Park has sustained damage to trees and some of the ziplines as a result of the Port Hills fires.

“As a result of this and the ongoing status of the fires, we are closed until further notice.

“We thank customers for their concern and support.  At this stage, the best thing you can do to help is to stay away from the Park and the police cordon surrounding the fire to enable those managing the situation to do their job.

Our thoughts are with those people who are worried about their homes and with the Fire Service at this time.”

Emergency and Recovery Minister Mark Mitchell commended the response and decisive actions taken by local authorities in managing the crisis.

“The speed of the response and the decisions made by the mayors have resulted in a world-class response to this fire event in Port Hills.”

Having witnessed the operations firsthand from the air, Mitchell praised the extensive efforts of first responders, including the deployment of helicopters, fixed-wing aircraft, and ground crews employing bulldozers to establish fire breaks.

“There’s a very high level of engagement with that community. In recognition that information is important,” Mitchell acknowledged the anxiety within the community, particularly among those affected by past fires.

Mitchell lauded the “pragmatic approach” adopted by Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) and the police in assisting displaced homeowners, ensuring their needs, including caring for pets and livestock and retrieving essential items, are addressed promptly.

“From my perspective, it’s an outstanding response” Mitchell said.

George Heard/ Pool Christchurch Adventure Park

“We’ll stand behind it” Christchurch Mayor in Adventure Park

Christchurch Mayor Phil Mauger expressed concern regarding the damage observed at the Adventure Park’s hilltop.

One of his primary concerns was the upcoming mountain biking competition scheduled in two weeks.

However, there’s a need to assess the extent of the fire’s reach down the hill and evaluate the resulting damage.

As a council, they remained dedicated to ensuring the park’s future Mauger said.

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch

Chris Lynch is a journalist, videographer and content producer, broadcasting from his independent news and production company in Christchurch, New Zealand. If you have a news tip or are interested in video content, email [email protected]

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