Two firefighters have been taken to hospital after being injured while the blaze in the Jonkershoek Valley, 10km outside Stellenbosch, which has been raging for five days.
The fire has already destroyed more than 8 000 hectares of vegetation, with the flames being fuelled by strong winds.
The fire has continued to spread through Jonkershoek and along the mountain peaks into the Blaauwklippen area, despite a crew of 236 firefighters, assisted by 24 fire-fighting vehicles doing their best to get the fire under control.
Aerial water-bombing couldn’t be implemented earlier due to dense smoke and high winds making flying dangerous. Fortunately, conditions today allowed for water-bombing.
Stellenbosch Mayor, Gesie van Deventer, said the fire was still out of control and crews were working around the clock to contain and control it.
While there has been no loss of life, livelihoods or property at this stage, a few residents from an informal settlement, MTO, have been relocated to a community hall in Cloetesville as a safety measure.
Dense smoke and ash resulting from the fire is proving problematic and residents were advised that they should keep their windows and doors closed to avoid their homes being affected.
The elderly and frail and those with co-morbidities, such as asthma, as well as young children were advised to move to safer areas.
Stellenbosch Municipality thanked residents for the outpouring of support that it has received.
‘There have been many requests around the donation of funds for relief efforts. Anyone who wishes to make a monetary donation, can do so by making use of the already established Mayoral Fund’ it posted on Facebook.
Details are as follows:
Account name: Stellenbosch Municipality Charitable Bank
Account type: Public Sector Cheque Account
Account number: 62869253733
Branch Code 210554
Swift code: FIRNZAJJ
Please use the reference ‘Fire Aid’ to ensure that the donation is ring-fenced. Any funds donated will go straight towards the relief efforts.
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