Jeffreys Bay
Veld fire burning near Jeffreys Bay

A veld fire raging in the Elands River Valley for nearly a week is said to have destroyed an estimated 50 000 hectares of veld.

Veld fire

Working On Fire says it has deployed 150 people on the fire line to fight the blaze which is being fuelled by strong winds and dry conditions.

Provincial manager, Ian Henderson, says the fire is believed to have been started by lightning last Tuesday.

He says at the moment it’s running through fynbos at quite a high speed and according to him is out of control.

However, Henderson told Algoa FM News that at the moment there is no danger to property or people.

“It is 5km away from the Cape Pine Plantation and it is burning towards them. We are trying to stop it, but it is very difficult. The wind speed at the moment is 40km/h”

Henderson told Algoa FM News that the wind direction is North East and on the Northern flank the fire’s burning towards the Groendal Nature Reserve.

He says it’s not a problem at the moment but if the wind direction changes, which they expect tomorrow, Groendal will be threatened.

Henderson says on the southern ridge the Longmore Cape Pine Plantation is threatened right now but the situation is managed by the forester in charge of the plantation.

“We have just deployed a WOF helicopter to put water on that fire to try and slow it down. We don’t know about any stock losses at the moment but we are concerned about the Elands River community. We are in contact with them and they are on stand by if they need to evacuate” he said

The Kouga Municipality has meanwhile cautioned motorists in the Elands River and Longmore vicinity, to be cautious as visibility is poor due to the smoke.

Source: Algoa FM

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