The Cape Winelands District Municipality’s Fire Services and various partners have made good progress in bringing the fire that has been raging in the mountains above Stellenbosch and Franschhoek under control.
The incident command team have reported that due to favourable wind conditions, the aerial resources have made good progress on the fire lines on the higher slopes and peaks of Bothmaskop through to the Helshoogte pass.
There is a small fire line on the peak above Banhoek, however it is inaccessible by foot or vehicle and water bombing will be ineffective due to the steep cliffs. The current hot weather has affected the length of time that the helicopters can remain in the air and teams will need to stand down in the late afternoon.
The fire in the valley below Jongnkershoek is proving challenging, the teams reported repeated flare-ups that were difficult to bring under control due to the hot weather. The firefighters, ground crews and vehicles will focus their attention on managing this fire during the relative cool of the night. Active firefighting activities and management of flare-ups a will continue throughout the night.
South African Weather Services are predicting temperatures reaching into the high thirties tomorrow, which in turn will have a negative impact on the firefighters.