Fire crews evacuated from 'out of control' Matakana fire

A fire burning near Matakana, north of Auckland, is now under control but not yet contained.

Seventeen crews, totalling more than 70 people, and three helicopters are fighting the blaze near Matakana.

An ambulance has been called to the scene of an 'out of control' fire north of Auckland because of a large number of beehives in the area.

Locals say the fire, which started around 2pm, is believed to have been started by a man burning disease out of a beehive.

An ambulance has been called due to fears fire personnel may suffer allergic reactions if stung.

The fire is burning down a valley (Jenny Marcroft/Newshub.)
The fire is burning down a valley (Jenny Marcroft/Newshub.)

A fire service spokesperson says: "The fire is not yet under control and continues to break away".

Several homes along Wright Road are being evacuated by police and the road has now been closed.

Sergeant Bede Haughey says around 6pm they should have a better understanding of the fire's ferocity.

"The wind looks changeable it's certainly gusting so we won't know [when we will get the fire under control] until at least an hour."

"We've evacuated some houses and we are on standby to evacuate others should the fire not be suppressed."

There are also concerns it could get worse.

"They have yet to contain the fire, it's reigniting and they will continue to drop the monsoon buckets on there until it is suppressed."

The Auckland Command Unit has arrived on scene to coordinate the Matakana incident. Police are also assisting with cordons.

A sudden change in wind direction earlier forced 15 crews fighting the fire to evacuate.