Evacuations, building destroyed as wildfires spread in Paarl

2017-01-17 12:00
Gallery  |  click on thumbnail to view larger image

GALLERY: Strong winds fuel Cape Town inferno

Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services fought a challenging battle against a fire in the Vredehoek area. Residents were advised to evacuate as firefighters attempts to control the fire were hindered by the extreme wind.

Cape Town – More than 100 people have been evacuated from two farms in Paarl and the main building of the renowned Calais Wine Estate has burnt down as wildfires in the area spread.

- Are you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts and photos.

Drakenstein municipality fire head Derick Damons said shortly after 02:00, 137 residents were evacuated from the Olyvenbosch and Salem farms.

"They are being accommodated in a hall on the Salem farm, and the Dal Josaphat Primary School was gracious enough to accommodate people there."

Blazes also burnt down the main building of the oldest wine farm in Paarl, the Calais Wine Estate, on Tuesday morning.

Damons said strong winds fanned the flames.

"At 7 o’clock this morning [Tuesday] the main house was destroyed by fires. Strong winds and the timber flooring and beams in the building helped the flames," he said.

Wildfires started burning in the area on Sunday.

On Tuesday, Damons said the fire was not yet under control.

"Strong gusty winds have fanned the flames," he said.

"We have aerial support. They could only be deployed this morning because of strong winds the past few days. We hope that the helicopters will help bring the situation more under control."

Two military helicopters and 56 firefighters are currently on the scene.

The Du Toit’s Kloof tunnel was open, while the Du Toit’s Kloof pass has been closed.

"The tunnel is open, but people need to be very careful because of all the smoke in the area," Damons said.


The main house at the Calais estate which burnt down (Calais Wine Estate) 

Several other wildfires

The City of Cape Town on Tuesday said that fires on Table Mountain near Vredehoek had been contained. Four buildings were damaged in the blazes.

Several other wildfires have broken out around the Western Cape since January.

Last Wednesday, two homes burnt down in Simon's Town.

There was damage to several wine farms in Somerset West and Grabouw, and the luxury Bezweni Lodge burnt down.

At the start of January, the historic homestead of Afrikaans poet Totius was destroyed in a fire.

Read more on:    cape town  |  fires

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.

Behind the sparkle

Alluring, beautiful and timeless - diamonds are some of the most sought after gems in the world and are a true testament of everlasting brilliance. Let us take you behind the sparkle to show you the history behind this coveted jewel.

/News
 

Fascinating facts about dogs

Think you know a lot about dogs? How many of these facts do you know?

 
 

Paws

Out with the old dog, in with the new
Play with your pet when you're not at home
How to get rid of fleas
12 Cool cat facts
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.