More firefighters deployed to tackle Cape Town fires

Dozens more firefighters arrived on Chapman’s Peak Drive on Monday afternoon.

Boyes Drive has been closed to traffic due to veld fires. Picture: Natalie Malgas/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Additional firefighters have been deployed to the Southern Peninsula as fierce fires continue to rage in some parts of the region.

The blaze broke out above Ou Kaapse Weg over the weekend.

Thousands of hectares of vegetation have been ravaged, while several structures including the bungalows at the Tintswalo Atlantic Lodge have been destroyed.

Hundreds of firefighters have been battling the blaze for 48 hours and dozens more arrived on Chapman's Peak Drive on Monday afternoon.

Dense, dark smoke can still be seen rising from the mountain.

Visibility is severely restricted and firefighters are reportedly also dealing with extremely hot temperatures.

Firefighters battle a veld fire on Chapman's Peak Toll in the early hours of 2 March 2015. Picture: Charles Mercer/iWitness.

Roads remained closed on Monday afternoon and helicopters were still water bombing the area.

Meanwhile, Cape Town Disaster Risk Management said more than 50 people had been treated for smoke inhalation.

The fires were fanned by strong winds, which caused it to spread as far as Muizenberg, Noordhoek and Sun Valley.

The City of Cape Town's Janine Willemans said at least one firefighter was also injured.

"A fireman also sustained burn wounds and was treated on scene and was taken to hospital. At least 52 other members of the public have been treated for smoke inhalation, and 30 homes have been evacuated in Noordhoek."


Guests at Tintswalo Atlantic Lodge were relocated to other venues after flames engulfed the property in the early hours of Monday morning.

The Tintswalo Lodges Group issued a release saying that while management was devastated by the damage, they were relieved no one was injured.

Firefighters could not access the five-star seafront venue overnight as the flames were too big.

The full extent of the damage caused to the once sought-after venue has not been established as the lodge is still covered in smoke and ash.

The group's Chief Executive Officer is en route to the Mother City and is due to debrief staff later today.

Travellers with reservations at the boutique lodge over the next two weeks will be re-directed.

The veld fires in Muizenberg on 2 March 2015. Picture: Natalie Malgas/EWN.


Apart from the chaos the fire is wreaking among communities, the traffic has also been affected.

The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) has joined emergency teams in their firefighting efforts.

Veld fire at Lakeside, close to Boyes Drive, on 2 March 2015. Picture: Samantha van der Merwe/iWitness.

The organisation's base at Hout Bay harbour is being used as a joint operations centre.

The NSRI's Craig Lambinon said, "Helicopters have also joined efforts to contain the blaze."

Helicopters are now water bombing hotspots and the fires have now spread to Hout Bay.

The NSRI added that curious onlookers were blocking access for fire services and emergency vehicles in the Hout Bay area.

Lambinon urged residents to steer clear of the area in order to give authorities space to do their jobs.

WATCH: Fire rages in South Peninsula.

The Cape of Good Hope SPCA, in the meantime, said it was concerned about the wildlife in areas affected by raging fires.

The SPCA Wildlife Unit's Megan Reid said while teams were not able to access the affected areas because of the extent of the fire, they were on standby.

"Porcupines, tortoises, greysbokkies and snakes will be displaced."