Ricochet News

Kouga Municipality fire-fighters prepared as strong winds expected in the area

Jun 22, 2017
Kouga Municipality fire-fighters prepared as strong winds expected in the area

Already weary, Kouga Local Municipality fire-fighters have again prepared for fires that might flare up on Thursday when strong winds are expected to sweep over the region.

"Strong winds have been predicted, renewing fears that there could be flare-ups in the Longmore, Thornhill and Van Stadens Gorge areas," described Kouga Local Municipality Executive Mayor, Elza van Lingen.

"While there have been no further flare-ups overnight or today, there are still areas that are smouldering at Longmore and the Van Stadens Gorge, as well as behind Woodridge in Nelson Mandela Bay Metro.

"Kouga fire-fighters and farmers have been doing preventative mop-ups in preparation of the strong winds. A team has also been sent to Woodridge to help Nelson Mandela Bay with mop-up operations there."

She said that the fire that flared up behind Woodridge on Tuesday was extinguished with the help of two SANDF helicopters, which also helped to douse smaller flare-ups at the Van Stadens Gorge.

Damage & Warnings:

"It will cost an estimated R1-million to replace fire-damaged road signs, guard rails and fences along the N2 in the vicinity of Van Stadens. Sanral has been removing the damaged signs and has ordered new ones," the Mayor said.

"Drivers are asked to continue driving with caution and to be on the look-out for burnt trees which could fall over into the roads.

"Eskom has completed repairs to major power lines that were damaged by the fire and estimates that it will take another two weeks to complete repairs to minor lines."

Van Lingen said that police continue to patrol the Thornhill area so as to prevent looting.

"No incidents of looting have been reported.

"Donations are still being received and can be dropped off at the Thornhill police station," she added.