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Update: 11 homes destroyed by St Francis Bay fire - fire now extinguished

Dec 19, 2018
Update: 11 homes destroyed by St Francis Bay fire - fire now extinguished

As mop up operations begin in St Francis Bay where a runaway fire gutted homes on Tuesday, the Kouga Local Municipality on Wednesday confirmed that the final tally of homes destroyed in the fire stands at 11.

Several other homes were damaged by the fire.

"The fire at St Francis has been extinguished. Fire-fighters were on site throughout the night to monitor for hot spots and do mop up operations," the municipality said.

"Thank you to everyone who donated water, etc, for the fire-fighters. No further donations are needed in this regard."

Last night, the municipality had made an appeal for donations to assist firefighters in their efforts including bottled water (small ones that they can carry with them); energy drinks; energy bars; Bar Ones or other chocolate; eye wash;  and easy quick meals (hamburgers, hotdogs, pies, sandwiches, etc).

"We will, however, be assessing the needs of the affected residents this morning and will advise asap whether further donations are required to assist them," the municipality added.

The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) St Francis Bay said that a man was transported to hospital for serious carbon monoxide poisoning due to the fire.

Damage in St Francis Bay fire expected to be in millions of Rands

Meanwhile, speaking to a local broadcaster, Kouga Local Municipality Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, said the fire that gutted homes in St Franciss Bay could have been started by residents of a nearby informal settlement near Sea Vista.

Authorities will be formally probing how the fire started as well as the total cost of the damaged, which is expected in millions of Rands.

Firefighters will maintain a watch for any flare ups in the area for the rest of the week.

Earlier on, the Kouga Local Municipality ordered the evacuation of residents and holiday-makers in the surrounding area, along St Francis Drive up to Assissi Drive, due to the fire.

“We ask that people stay away from the affected area. If you live in the area and are concerned about your safety, please go to the municipal office where an evacuation centre has been set up,” the municipality said.

Social media has also seen a pouring of sympathy for the residents of St Francis Bay. St Francis Bay was trending on Twitter because of the fire.

Several residents, who are away from the town for the Festive Season holidays have also taken to social media appealing for desperate information on the status of their own homes.

Image supplied by Julie Harrison

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