Tsitsikamma fire: 151 firefighters on the scene as blaze rages for third day



Published Jun 23, 2021


Cape Town - Multiple fire teams were on Wednesday still battling to contain fires which broke out on Monday in the Tsitsikamma region of South Africa’s Eastern Cape province.

Currently there are 151 firefighters working on the two plantation fires, including teams from Working on Fire (WoF) -- a programme attached to the department of forestry, fisheries and environment -- as well as Southern Cape Fire Protection, MTO (Mountain to Ocean Plantation) Forestry, local municipalities and South African National Parks, WoF spokeswoman Nthabiseng Mokone said in a statement.

The fires broke out in the Coldstream and Koomansbos areas and have so far destroyed over 3 600 hectares of commercial plantation and natural veld.

No structures have however been damaged by the blazes, whose cause remains unknown so far.

Initially WoF dispatched seven teams from the Eastern Cape which are based in the Sarah Baartman district municipality as well as teams from Crags and Uniondale in the Western Cape to assist MTO, the Eastern Cape Umbrella Fire Protections Association and Southern Cape Fire Protection.

Aerial support to assist firefighters on the ground has also been dispatched and there are currently two huey helicopters, one fixed wing spotter plane and two aircraft support vehicles on the scene, Mokone said.

She applauded the assistance from local communities and businesses which have continued supporting firefighters, including local retailer Shoprite in Humansdorp which has donated food parcels.

African News Agency (ANA)

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