A state of emergency has been declared in Christchurch due to the fires raging on the Port Hills. This now means the defence force can help fight the fires.
Overnight, the two main fires merged into one large blaze in excess of 1850 hectares and was growing.
450 Christchurch homes have been evacuated so far, which involves anything up to 1000 people having left their homes. Police are going door to door to evacuate people.
Fire crews on the ground worked through the night to protect properties.
Cashmere Primary School has closed for the day due to being close to the fires.
Christchurch civil defence controller Dave Adamson told Morning Report the weather forecast was not good for firefighting, with winds expected to develop this afternoon.
Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee, who is heading to Christchurch, said the situation was “getting pretty serious”.
Eight homes have been burned down due the the fires.