Fire started by lightning 'burning out of control' in Robertson Valley

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The fire continues to burn in the Winelands.
The fire continues to burn in the Winelands.
Cape Winelands District Municipality
  • Firefighters are still battling blazes in the Cape Winelands district.
  • The fires in Agter-Vinkrivier in the Robertson Valley were started by lightning on Saturday afternoon.
  • The Pearl Valley fire outside Paarl is mostly contained.

Cape Winelands District Municipality (CWDM) firefighters are still battling two fires, the most concerning being a blaze which was started by lightning in Agter-Vinkrivier in the Robertson Valley.

Municipality spokesperson Jo-Anne Otto said this fire, which started late on Saturday afternoon, was "burning out of control".

"The fire teams have identified areas where lines are currently burning actively in the most inaccessible areas of the Langeberg Mountains. The fire line is very large, and due to a combination of factors – including inaccessibility, the effective deployment of resources and in the interest of the protection of lives, infrastructure and property – the fire teams will act pro-actively," said Otto.

READ | Firefighters battling to contain raging fires in the Cape Winelands

Otto said the progress of the fire was being monitored by teams on both the Montagu and Robertson sides.

"The teams will focus their resources on preventing the fire from reaching property. CWDM's Fire Services are being assisted by Volunteer Fire Services," she said.

Meanwhile, the Pearl Valley fire outside Paarl is mostly contained.

Most of the dense vegetation which is still smouldering is causing a lot of smoke, according to Otto.

Otto added:

At this stage, firefighting activities are going well. However, teams are concerned that the wind may pick up, causing sparks to travel to the nearby thatched structures.

Amid sweltering weather conditions in the Western Cape, firefighters on Saturday managed to contain fires in Bainskloof and De Wet.

In Cape Town, firefighters also contained a blaze on both sides of Ou Kaapse Weg.

"The Cape Winelands is expecting another very hot day, with temperatures exceeding 40 degrees. This means that the possibility of fires is very high," said Otto.

"We continue to implore citizens wanting to spend the day at our public spaces to refrain from making braai fires, even if there are designated braai spots."

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