The fire as seen from Lakeside on Sunday evening. Picture: Vivien Horler, Independent Media
The fire as seen from Lakeside on Sunday evening. Picture: Vivien Horler, Independent Media

Cape fire damages four homes - report

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Mar 2, 2015

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*This article has been updated

Cape Town - Firefighters have spent the night fighting massive fires in the peninsula's deep South.

Eye Witness news is reporting that four houses have been damaged in the fire.

Three old age homes were evacuated in Muizenberg, Cape Town Disaster Risk Management said on Monday.

A spokesman for Sanparks told Cape Talk's breakfast host Kieno Kammies that the fire had "jumped Boyes Drive", thought it was unclear where this had happened.

Ou Kaapse Weg and Chapman's Peak Drive have been closed.

On Sunday, the firefighters were dispatched to put out a fire above Boyes Drive which ranged in the mountains towards Ou Kaapseweg.

Table Mountain National Parks, Working on Fire and Wildfire Services all sent out firefighters to fight the fire, which broke out in the early morning.

It was fanned by heavy winds and spread from Peck’s Valley, above Boyes Drive to Ou Kaapseweg.

Working on Fire spokesman Philip Prins said that because of the harsh condition it was difficult to locate the fire. “We knew there was a fire, but we had a problem locating it. It was difficult to see it properly in the mist.”

 

Prins said there was an attempt made to use helicopters to water-bomb the fire, but at times they could not be flown out because of the low clouds and wind.

“Normally firefighters and volunteers walk along the mountain trails and would work hand-in-hand with helicopters water-bombing the fire. But because helicopters had to be pulled out firefighters were working on their own.”

Prins said that since Saturday afternoon his workers had been working tirelessly. “It’s a terrible fire and we are in a very bad situation. The fire has still not been contained.”

Mass care centres had been opened at two churches and the Fish Hoek Community Hall to house the people affected.

People can send any donations to the Fish Hoek Community Hall, Cape Town Disaster Risk Management spokesman Onele Ndesi said.

"There were no injuries reported. At this stage we are focused on getting the fire under control, but with the current weather conditions in the Cape anything could have started the fire," Ndesi said.

"What we want to say to the community at this moment is to make sure that they wet their gardens and if they have thatch roofs to wet the roofs as well."

* On Saturday firefighters battled a fierce blaze which was dangerously close to homes in Betty’s Bay. Resources were stretched to capacity and Cape Town teams were sent to help douse the flames. Marlu Rust, the commander in control of firefighting operations, said the blaze had spread between houses, but no residents had been evacuated.

Overstrand Municipality mayor Nicolette Botha-Guthrie said firefighters were also battling a smaller blaze near Hawston and this was placing a burden on resources.

Lisel Krige, a councillor in the area, said earlier that three firefighting helicopters had tried to douse the flames, but could not be operated after nightfall.

“We’re receiving reinforcement from Cape Town,” she said.

Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services spokesman Theo Lane said the Overstrand Municipality had asked for help because houses were under threat. He said five fire engines and personnel from the city were dispatched to the scene. A Volunteer Wildfire Services team was also sent from Jonkershoek.

Cape Argus

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