John Mackie with the Christchurch, New Zealand, Civil Defense provides a 5 minute video update to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) News about the wildfires and current efforts of over 400 firefighters and air resources working to extinguish the flames.
Two separate wildfires joined earlier in the week and burned into urban Christchurch from rural areas.
Fanned by warm northwesterly winds and dry conditions, over 1,000 have been evacuated thus far and 11 homes have been lost.
It is hoped that rain expected on Saturday (our Friday here in the U.S.) will provide fire crews an advantage over the fire.
Sadly, a helicopter pilot fighting the fire died on Tuesday 14 February. Corporal David Steven Askin was a New Zealand Army Afghanistan war veteran and had received one of the country’s top military honors for bravery. Although wounded by grenade and rife fire, he saved guests during the 2011 siege of the luxury Inter-Continental Hotel in Kabul.