Authorities have advised pregnant and breastfeeding women to temporarily shift away from an underground fire burning at a landfill near Pukemiro and Glen Afton.
Waikato Regional Council's preliminary health assessment over the weekend, based on a report from the Institute of Environmental Science and Research, referenced a similar event overseas. It indicated there was potential for increased levels of dioxins as a result of the landfill fire.
The council said the presence of dioxins was yet to be confirmed with local tests, which would require specialist equipment to arrive from overseas.
Dump owner John Campbell refused to talk about the alert to RNZ; last week he ridiculed locals' health fears as made up and bordering on "hysteria".