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Plans in place as firefighters continue battling Vermaaklikheid fire

Officials say despite fierce winds hampering firefighting efforts on Tuesday afternoon, firefighters managed to douse some of the flames.

A Working on Fire helicopter in the process of extinguishing a fire in the Vermaaklikheid area in the Southern Cape on 22 October 2018. Picture: @wo_fire/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Firefighting efforts in the Southern Cape community of Vermaaklikheid will continue throughout the night.

Officials say despite fierce winds hampering firefighting efforts on Tuesday afternoon, firefighters managed to douse some of the flames.

At least 60 firefighters have been deployed to assist with the blaze.

On Tuesday morning, 65-year-old Working on Fire pilot Nico Heyns died when his chopper went down during firefighting efforts.

An initial investigation has found Heyns lost control of aircraft.

Overberg Fire chief Reinhardt Geldenhuys says some residents had been evacuated as a precautionary measure, but the families have since returned to their homes.

“We have people and plans in place for the night and more teams coming in at daybreak as well as aerial support for Wednesday.”