Around 4 700 hectares destroyed as firefighters try for fourth day to tame Kleinmond wildfire

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Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for a fourth day.
Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for a fourth day.
  • Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for a fourth day.
  • The fire has destroyed around 4 700 hectares of land.
  • By Tuesday, all roads to Kleinmond and Hermanus had been reopened.

Firefighters are battling a blaze in the coastal Overberg town of Kleinmond for a fourth day after breaking out on Saturday.

Nearly 4 700 hectares of fynbos and plantations have been damaged.

On Tuesday morning, authorities reopened all roads to Kleinmond and Hermanus, including the Karwyderskraal Road.

"The Perdeberg lines are partly contained. There is no current threat to town and infrastructure. Ground teams are deployed to Perdeberg," said Overstrand Mayor Annelie Rabie.

"Crews worked through the night continuously to put out hotspots and cool down the vicinity of Arabella and Karwyderskraal."

On Monday, the fire that was burning between the mountain and the R44 reached the Arabella estate, and was heading towards Hermanus.

Residents of Heuningkloof were issued with a precautionary evacuation order.

Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for
Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for a fourth day.
Supplied
Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for
Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for a fourth day.
Supplied
Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for
Firefighters are battling a blaze in Kleinmond for a fourth day on Tuesday.
Supplied

Anton Bredell, Western Cape MEC for Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, said the fire started in Highlands in an old pine plantation of the national Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment.

Bredell said:

The fire has so far destroyed 4 700 (hectares) of fynbos and plantations. At this stage, only one building has been destroyed and there have been no fatalities.

Resources, which include 10 fire engines and aerial support, have been focused on protecting the fire lines at the Kleinmond Golf Club and Arabella estate.

The MEC said by Tuesday things were looking significantly better after extensive firefighting overnight.

"The town is safe and no properties are under threat. The area around the Arabella Golf Estate is also largely secured, with no significant damage reported. The section in the direction of Karwyderskraal is still active but under control," he added.

Bredell has thanked all the men and women who have worked around the clock for the past four days to manage and contain the fire.

"At any given time, there is more than 200 people actively on the ground doing their best to prevent damage to infrastructure and to keep the local population safe."

The Western Cape is in the midst of its fire season, which takes place during the hot, dry and windy summer months, and on average sees between 17 000 and 20 000 fires each year.

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