Hot, dry & windy conditions spark fire season fears

The Western Cape Local Government Department has put in place various resources and manpower as it expects a busy fire season.

Environmental Affairs MEC Anton Bredell speaking during the official launch of the fire season in Somerset West. Picture: @wo_fire/Twitter.

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Local Government Department has put in place various resources and manpower as it expects a busy fire season.

At the official launch of the fire season in Somerset West on Friday, the provincial government said it’s preparing for the threat of potentially catastrophic wildfires this summer.

It’s feared the season could be one of the worst with hot, dry and windy conditions across the Western Cape, which is already struggling with a severe drought.

Provincial local government and Environmental Affairs MEC Anton Bredell said: “We have about 600 people on the ground and about 500 men and women from Working on Fire in other parts of the province on standby.”

About 9,000 wildfires were reported between April 2016 and March 2017.