George wildfire death toll rises to 7 - pregnant woman, baby, toddlers among those killed

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Outeniqua Pass on fire from the Blanco side. (Supplied)
Outeniqua Pass on fire from the Blanco side. (Supplied)

*Update: News24 earlier reported that eight people died according to reports by SAPS. However, it was later confirmed that the death toll was placed at seven.

The death toll in the wildfire in the Bosdorp community has risen to seven people, police said on Monday night.

Captain Malcolm Pojie said initially four people were reported dead and later it was confirmed that the fatalities increased to seven people.

Pojie said it was reported that a pregnant woman was among those who were later reported dead.

The Garden Route District Municipality had earlier said the wildfire in the Bosdorp community has claimed four lives.

"It is with great shock and deep sadness that we have been informed of four fatalities in the Bosdorp community due to the wildfire," the Garden Route District Municipality noted in a tweet.

It said that EMS reported that one one adult, two toddlers and one baby died around 18:00.

The municipality had earlier said the fire was moving through Karatara, in the Kraaibosh area above Rheenendal.

It said three structures had burned down.

Rheenendal Fire Management Units FMU’s have been activated, according to the municipality.

Residents were being evacuated to the Karatara Community Hall.

Over 200 people were currently in the hall, according to the municipality.

The George and Garden Route District municipalities stated in a joint statement earlier that there were ongoing active fires in George in the Outeniqua Pass area, reported News24.

In two areas close to the pass, the traffic department and police were aiding a precautionary evacuation.

"George Municipality is, as a precaution, evacuating residents in Blanco Golden Valley and Step-Aside," according to a municipal alert.

"We request people to move carefully and not to panic."

Over the last week, firefighters in the Western Cape have been battling blazes in Kosovo informal settlement, Khayelitsha, Overcome Heights in Vrygrond and along the Garden Route.

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Outeniqua Pass on fire (Supplied by Georgiete Staan Saam Facebook page)

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Outeniqua Pass on fire (Supplied by Georgiete Staan Saam Facebook page)

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Outeniqua Pass on fire (Supplied by Georgiete Staan Saam Facebook page)

  

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