From the news desk

Western Cape braced for busy fire season as firefighters battle multiple blazes

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By Ragheema Mclean

As the festive season kicks off, the Fire Department in Cape Town has been inundated with distress calls spanning from Dunoon to Simon’s Town and the Cape Winelands.

Tragedy struck Dunoon over the weekend as hundreds of residents were left homeless and destitute due to relentless fires.

Meanwhile, multiple vegetation fires have ignited across various regions, with the largest blaze reported in Simon’s Town.

Additionally, vegetation fires have emerged in the Cape Winelands District Municipality, notably along the Berg River in Franschhoek and in Du Toit’s Kloof outside Paarl.

Speaking on the VOC Breakfast show on Thursday, spokesperson for COCT Fire and Rescue Services, said the fire in Dunoon destroyed 187 structures over the weekend, displacing around 500 individuals.

“Another fire occurred recently, devastating around 50 informal structures.”

Carelse expressed gratitude to organizations like Gift of the Givers for their humanitarian aid during these crises.

The fire in Simon’s Town, he mentioned, ignited on Tuesday, prompting multiple ground teams to assist in containing it.

“We have multiple people on the ground assisting.”

“There are still more than 200 staff members on the ground from the City’s Fire and Rescue, Table Mountain National Park, Working on Fire, Volunteer Wildfire Services, NCC and Disaster Management Centre volunteers,” he said.

He added, “We are looking ahead for a very rough day still for the men and women over there. But we are confident that we will win the battle with the wind.”

Meanwhile, the city’s Fire and Rescue has pleaded with the public to take precautions when celebrating during the festive season as the current weather conditions are conducive to starting fires.

It has urged those who will be having braais to be careful of the windy conditions.

VOC News

Photo: X/@CityofCT

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