Cape Town fires diverted from residential areas

2015-03-04 10:25
A firefighting helicopter dumps water on a fire raging in the Tokai Forest near Cape Town. (Nardus Engelbrecht, Sapa)

A firefighting helicopter dumps water on a fire raging in the Tokai Forest near Cape Town. (Nardus Engelbrecht, Sapa)

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Ecologically these fires are good news - expert

2015-03-03 17:33

News24 Live boarded a chopper on Tuesday to get an aerial view of the devastation caused by the fires on the South Peninsula range. Christo Marais from Natural Resource Management gives us an overview of the damage to fauna and flora. Watch. WATCH

Cape Town - The fires currently burning above the Noordhoek and Fish Hoek areas in Cape Town are now being managed, but not yet contained, Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services spokesperson Theo Layne told News24 on Wednesday morning.

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The fire currently above the evacuated Clovelly area in Fish Hoek has been diverted away from residential areas. However, flare-ups are still possible due to hotspots, Layne added.

In Noordhoek, fires have subsided after at least seven homes were razed early on Wednesday morning, including parts of Monkey Valley Resort.

Layne also said that hot spots in the Noordhoek areas means the area is still susceptible to flare ups.

In the Tokai area, 50 people were evacuated from the Zwaanswyk area on Wednesday morning, after eight houses were damaged, and three were destroyed by fires.

Working around the clock

Earlier, Sapa reported that at least 300 people were evacuated in Tokai, Noordhoek and Chapman's Peak as firefighters continued to battle the blaze which broke out over the weekend.

Various rescue crews worked overnight to try and contain the fire.

Cape Town Disaster Risk Management said 300 firefighters were working around the clock, and included Working on Fire, City of Cape Town and Table Mountain National Parks.

Houses were damaged in Noordhoek, Tokai, Steenberg Golf Estate and Klein Constantia, said spokesperson Charlotte Powell.

"The hotspots where firefighters are trying to contain the fire are Clovelly, Klein Constantia and Tokai," she said.

Roads that remain closed were Boyes Road, Chapman's Peak and Clovelly Road.

On Monday, the City of Cape Town said that three helicopters water-bombed Hout Bay and Tokai until sunset.

Strong winds

The fire started on Sunday but was contained and started again just after 02:00 on Monday in Muizenberg above Boyes Drive and was fanned by strong winds.

It spread to Ou Kaapse Weg, Chapman's Peak, Hout Bay and Tokai.

One city firefighter had been admitted to hospital after sustaining burn wounds while 52 frail-care residents from the Noordhoek retirement village were treated for smoke inhalation.

Five homes had been destroyed along Silvermine in Noordhoek.

There was also some damage to parts of Tintswalo Lodge at the foot of Chapman's Peak.

- News24 and Sapa

- Follow the Live Updates here.

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