The Cape Navigator

Seaside Community Newspaper

Bonnievale, Cape Winelands, Rawsonville, Wolseley, Worcester

Intense Battle Against Wildfires Rages On in the Cape Winelands

Michael Hawthorne

In a relentless battle against raging wildfires, the Cape Winelands District Municipality‘s (CWDM) Fire Services and collaborative teams are facing multiple challenges as they strive to bring the situation under control.

Fire Update – 16:00, 1 February 2024

The CWDM Fire Services, alongside various teams, have made progress on some fire lines, but others continue to burn out of control. Adverse weather conditions, with temperatures exceeding 38°C, uneven terrain, and extremely dry vegetation, have exacerbated the challenges faced by firefighting crews.

New Fire Breaks Out in Bonnievale

A new fire was reported at 15:15 in the mountains above Bonnievale, adding to the existing challenges. Resources have been swiftly deployed, and teams are en route to combat the flames.

Kluitjieskraal, Wolseley – Day 10

The fire that started on January 22, 2024, at Kluitjieskraal in Wolseley, has been burning for ten days. A flare-up occurred at Elandsberg last night, but aerial resources and ground crews managed to contain it. Despite the containment, a new line emerging from Limietberg, fueled by strong south-easterly winds and abundant vegetation, reached the Rooshoek farm. Ground and aerial resources successfully contained the lines on the farm, with teams remaining vigilant throughout the night for monitoring and mop-up operations.

Fairy Glen, Worcester – Day 6

The fire that began on January 26, 2024, in Fairy Glen, Worcester, has been burning for six days. Fire lines here have been contained, with continuous monitoring in progress throughout the night.

Brandvlei, Rawsonville – Day 4

The Brandvlei fire, starting on January 29, 2024, has been burning for four days and continues to pose challenges. Teams have created firebreaks where possible but are actively working to physically protect houses in the Louwshoek area. Despite efforts, the fire lines remain out of control. Ground teams, supported by 19 firefighting vehicles, 150 crew members, NCC, aerial support, and collaborative efforts with organizations such as CapeNature and the Fire Protection Association, are actively engaged in firefighting activities and property protection.

The CWDM Fire Services, along with their contracted ground teams, are collaborating with various organizations, including the South African Air Force (SAAF), Provincial Disaster Management Centre, Volunteer WildFire Services, Working on Fire, Lewis Bush Clearing, and Alien Firefighting.

As the battle intensifies, residents are urged to stay informed, adhere to safety protocols, and support the efforts of firefighting teams working tirelessly to protect lives and properties in the Cape Winelands. The situation remains dynamic, with updates expected as the firefighting operations progress.


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