A huge orange blaze engulfing part of the mountain. Smoke sweeping over the city, penetrating houses whose windows were firmly shut. The sound of sirens in the street and helicopters flying overhead.
This is not the scene of a movie. Rather it is what many people experienced last night and this morning. A fire that broke out at Deer Park yesterday (Monday 16 January 2017) was thought to be extinguished, but around 9 pm strong winds caused the flames to flare up again. The fire quickly spread, and could be seen over Vredehoek, causing concern for the safety of residents in the area.
The Volunteer Wildfire Services (VWS) and the City’s Fire and Rescue Services worked all through the night to get the fire under control, and thanks to their tireless efforts managed to avoid a mass evacuation and got the fire under control this morning. Deer Park remains closed as of this morning.
While it is fire season in the Western Cape, we have seen an insane amount of devastating fires all over, including Somerset West, Simon’s Town, Signal Hill and now Table Mountain. Throughout, firefighters have worked relentlessly to protect as much as they could and keep us all safe. We are proud of the fine work that they do.
Here are some images from last night’s fire:
For those of you wondering why everything smells like smoke this morning, check out this recap from #deerparkfire last night pic.twitter.com/Ta3lqVJvl4
— Community Medics (@ComMedics) January 17, 2017
View from Tafelberg road #deerparkfire in #Vredehoek being spread by the wind. @cptfrs, @vwsfires trying to take control. pic.twitter.com/0fg9yT2HAD
— Community Medics (@ComMedics) January 16, 2017
#DeerParkFire fire is right behind three towers in Vredehoek. FF working to stop the flames. Wind very powerful. Reporting for #timeslive pic.twitter.com/vSwWgvyobG
— Anthony Molyneaux (@AJGMolyneaux) January 16, 2017
Scenes of Armageddon with the famous #DisaPark flats in the foreground. pic.twitter.com/LIRajJNL4T
— CapeTalk (@CapeTalk) January 16, 2017
Yet another fire in Cape Town. This time, Deer Park. I can’t stop thinking of the suffering, perishing animals ? pic.twitter.com/BpMF6JcrCP
— Muriel Argent (@muriel_argent) January 16, 2017
#deerparkfire helicopters arrive at first light to finish work of heroic groundcrew. Fighting wind & flame 9 hrs! pic.twitter.com/LohGGOfI90
— Jane Notten (@JaneNotten) January 17, 2017
Choppers are out for #DeerParkFire in #Vredehoek – thanks you to all services: @SafetyMountain @vwsfires @cptfrs @wo_fire @TableMountainNP pic.twitter.com/Y8srVEyYHe
— Sarka Svoboda (@SarkaSvoboda) January 17, 2017
Afterburn. #DeerParkFire https://t.co/U6bY0kPEs7 pic.twitter.com/z8AS2NoczX
— Rick-Rack Cadillac (@irCadillac) January 17, 2017
The heroes of Cape Town; exhausted after a long night of dominating the Vredehoek fires last night #deerparkfire ??? pic.twitter.com/j7DdavWA7C
— Kelli Knutsen (@KelliKnutsen) January 17, 2017
After very hard night, crew of #VWS volunteers stands down from the #DeerParkFire and head to their day jobs. #ThankYou. @KFMza @CapeTalk pic.twitter.com/OF8hSdVhvc
— VWS Wildfires (@vwsfires) January 17, 2017
Photography Muriel Argent/Twitter