Massive blaze on Auckland mountain being treated as suspicious

There are concerns a large blaze that broke out in Auckland on Wednesday morning could be arson.

Emergency services were called to the fire on Māngere Mountain shortly before 2am on Wednesday.

Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) assistant area commander Chris Delfos says the fire is now out and an investigation is underway.

Police confirmed earlier on Wednesday the fire is being treated as suspicious and investigations are underway.

A chopper is seen battling the blaze.
A chopper is seen battling the blaze. Photo credit: Supplied/Jeff Smith

"There is nothing obvious that has started it because it's out in the open," Delfos told Newshub.

"It was reasonably spectacular because it was on top of Māngere Mountain."

Massive blaze on Auckland mountain being treated as suspicious
Photo credit: Facebook

Delfos said crews had worked hard to extinguish the fire. He told Newshub some remain at the scene dampening down hotspots.

Access to fighting the fire had been an issue for FENZ as the blaze was at the top of the mountain.

"It could be seen from quite a significant distance away," FENZ spokesman Paul Redden told Newshub. "There were some concerns that people could see lava," Redden said, adding he wanted to reassure people there was no lava.

Residents on social media had reported being able to smell smoke.

"Omg. Smoke - and the smell woke us. Very thick like fog and not pleasant," one user said in a community Facebook group.

"Pretty scary knowing it's right outside," another wrote. "The smell is unbearable."

Meanwhile, fire crews were diverted from the mountain to a house fire in nearby Papatoetoe, where a woman was rescued from her bedroom.

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