NEWS

Fires Outside Somerset West Still Burning

Thick smoke from fires raging in the Somerset West area covered the Cape Peninsula on Wednesday morning.

04/01/2017 09:04 SAST | Updated 04/01/2017 13:32 SAST
Twitter.com/Bamburi
@Bamburi: "Blood red sun over the Red Cross Children's Hospital in Rondebosch about 6.30 am, result of the fires in Somerset West and elsewhere."

Thick smoke from fires raging in the Somerset West area covered the Cape Peninsula on Wednesday morning.

Helicopters and fixed-wing planes were back on the scene in the early morning hours, while firefighters were on duty overnight to douse the flames on the upper slopes of the mountain in Somerset West.

The fire broke out on Tuesday morning and was raging out of control by the evening, fanned by strong winds.

Areas in Somerset West were evacuated on Tuesday night after the fires damaged several homes in the area.

City of Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services spokesperson Theo Lane told News24 on Tuesday evening that helicopters had to be withdrawn due to the high winds and turbulence near the mountains.

The temperature in the area is expected to soar to 34°C on Wednesday and the wind is expected to pick up again.

People have been asked to drop donations of water and cool drinks (individual sizes if possible), snack bars and eye drops at Strand Fire Department - or at the Somerset West Neighbourhood Watch Communication Centre at 153 Main Road. -- News24Wire