Firefighters manage to redirect Franschhoek inferno away from town, agricultural areas

2019-02-22 11:41

"Immense efforts" by the Cape Winelands District Municipality fire services have resulted in the inferno burning in Franschhoek being directed away from the town’s borders and agricultural areas.

A special operation on Thursday afternoon managed the fire with a combination of wet lines and backburning, the municipality said in an update on Friday morning.

The Franschhoek Pass served as a firebreak, while helicopters and other vehicles created a wet line to prevent the backburn from getting out of control, it was explained prior to the action.

This approach was also used nine years ago during a similar fire in the area.

"Thanks to this precautionary measure, no damage to property, injuries or loss of life occurred," the municipality said.

"The fire does, however, continue to burn in the high altitude areas, where it poses no risk to life or property. These areas can now be prioritised and further management will be decided on at the incident command’s morning meeting."

On Thursday, News24 reported that the municipal fire services and its partners, the Winelands Fire Protection Association and CapeNature, had changed their approach as a result of a south-easter whipping through the area and the flames encroaching on the town.

Some people were also evacuated as a precaution due to the smoke.

The fire has already destroyed 5 472ha of veld in 96 hours.

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Read more on:    cape town  |  fires
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