More teams to fight outbreak of fires

2012-06-05 12:19

Polokwane - More fire reaction teams will be deployed to the Waterberg district in Limpopo to help fight an outbreak of veld fires in the region, Working on Fire said on Tuesday.

The parastatal's general manager Samuel Maepa said the province's 16 teams were not enough to cope with the fires and four additional teams had to be called in. Fire spotters and helicopters would also be deployed in the region.

Maepa said Working on Fire discovered that the Waterberg was vulnerable and was exposed to fire because of non-compliance with the National Environment Management Act.

The act required land owners to place fire-breaks on their properties to prevent severe damage when veld fires got out of hand.

"Whenever fire breaks [out], it becomes difficult to contain. It will be stopped either by road or natural boundaries, and in [the] absence of that it is not simple to contain it," he said.

Veld fires cost SA R20m in 2011

Maepa said veld fires damaged the country's economy and cost the game farming industry nearly R20m in 2011.

One of the farms lost nearly R13m when its animals burnt to death because they were fenced in during a veld fire.

Maepa said the fires were caused by people who wanted to stay warm in the mornings as well as wood collectors who wanted to dry their logs before harvest.

He appealed to communal leaders to take control and ensure that those who were negligent with their fires were prosecuted.

According to its website, Working on Fire is a government-funded, job-creation programme focusing on integrated fire management in South Africa.

Its firefighters are recruited from marginalised communities and trained in fire awareness and education, prevention and fire suppression skills.

  • Sonja - 2012-06-05 12:26

    Limpopo? they told us to go back to Europe, said we are they want our help..pppffft, go ask your idol Juliaaas Failema!!

      Joe - 2012-06-05 12:42

      I didn't hear anyone asking for your help. in any case, the people who are most likely to be affected by veld fires in the waterberg are wealthy white game farmers

      Sonja - 2012-06-05 13:45

      Shumba im sure the "white farmers" wouldnt cry for help... they are able to help themselves. unlike the lazy brainless racist Limpopans!!

      Joe - 2012-06-05 14:19

      "lazy brainless racist Limpopans" Yes. You clearly are far superior to them in every way possible. I cannot understand why they would want you to go back to Europe.

  • Henri - 2012-06-05 12:45

    Maybe if you remember to will your trucks with water you could controle the fires better !!!!!

  • Fussed - 2012-06-05 12:51

    Pity the poor bugger who phoned this one in to the fire dept. He is going to get one hell on an account. Shame

  • judith.taylor.56 - 2012-06-05 13:58

    A water stressed area where the situation is being made worse by Medupi and Khusile, which will consume far more of this precious resource than originally stated, plus the mines being developed there will consume additional amounts of water and polluted the rivers as well. NEMA is great regulation is non-existent

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-06-05 16:33

    Hehehehe leka one fussed man i love some some of these comments.

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-06-05 16:35

    Jealous of them joe?

  • WitWolf - 2012-06-05 16:47

    I hope they gave enough water and fuel in their vehicles....

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