Western Cape MEC for Local Government, Anton Bredell, who on Wednesday visited the Garden Route District Municipality, thanked the firefighting teams for all their efforts.
“Unfortunately, we have lost 8 lives; if we didn’t have these expertise around the table we could have lost more lives,” he added.
Garden Route District Municipality road closures due to fires
“All roads are currently open,” the Garden Route District Municipality said.
DE VLUGT ROAD TOWARDS KEURBOOMS
The area is a semi-rural with a gravel road, dense vegetation and certain parts contain residential and agricultural structures.
“This has become the critical area due to the history of fire damage and spreadng of wildfires in the vicinity.”
KARATARA AND RHEENENDAL
East of the Karatara and Rheenendal area, there are active fires currently having to be contained. Mopping-up operations are also underway at parts where the area has been burned.
“One of four cellular towers was destroyed in the area, which is also making communication with ground teams extremely difficult.”
The Kraaibosch area also includes a large amount of alien vegetation that is creating extreme fire conditions due to it producing high temperatures when burning.
Still, home owners have a choice of voluntarily evacuating their homes if their lives or infrastructure are being threatened.
Knysna Municipality has produced an evacuation plan and will activate resources according to the plan when needed.
Emergency responders will inform residents in the event that an emergency evacuation is required.
RESOURCES AT KARATARA / RHEENENDAL:
- 2 WoF teams (16 firefighters),
- a Knysna team,
- 1 West Coast crew (12 people, 1 medium pumper, tanker, 1 skid unit),
- 1 NCC crew (tanker, 36 firefighters) Private service provider contacted by PDMC, and
- 1 Bitou crew.