The provincial government has approached the National Disaster Management Centre to declare a Provincial Disaster after several wildfires rocked the Western Cape since the start of this year.
Provincial MEC of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell, says the move to declare a Provincial Disaster will allow the Premier and Finance Minister to allocate funding to sustain firefighting efforts.
Bredell added that the current hot and windy weather conditions, along with several active wildfires necessitate a large and coordinated firefighting effort.
“We have the necessary resources available to address the wildfires, but the disaster declaration will give us the ability to coordinate optimally. We are doing everything to protect lives and property”
The MEC further asked the public to report any sighting of a fire as quickly as possible to the closest authorities.
“Experience over many years has taught us that the faster the initial response, the better our chances are of successfully controlling a fire before it spirals out of control.”
The province has seen several fires in the Cape Winelands, Cape Town and the Overberg districts – with the latest reported in Pringle Bay.
On Tuesday, some residents in Pringle Bay had to take shelter in Kleinmond, after being ordered to evacuate their homes. This is after the fire that started in the region on Monday started to spread rapidly. The Overstrand Municipality therefore ordered an immediate evacuation notice to all residents.
Firefighters have worked through the night on Wednesday to contain the blaze. On Wednesday night, the fire was threatening properties along the R44 as it continued towards Brodie Link. The fireline spread towards the properties but no structures were lost.
READ MORE: Another busy day as fires rage in the Cape