Probe to determine cause of St Francis fire

An independent forensic investigation is being conducted to help determine the cause of the devastating fire at St Francis Bay late last month.

Eight houses were razed and four were damaged when the fire tore through Lyme Road North near the St Francis Bay Golf Course on Thursday evening, August 22.

Kouga Community Services Portfolio Councillor Daniel Benson said more than 80 fire-fighters, members of the Disaster Volunteer Group and two helicopters battled for over five hours to bring the blaze under control.

“The fire was contained at about 19:00 and fire-fighters spent the remainder of the night and following two days dousing the debris to prevent flare-ups,” he said.

He said in addition to the forensic probe commissioned by the municipality, the police were investigating a case of arson.

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According to a police statement, two men were seen calming bees with smoke in the area where the fire broke out. Police have urged anyone with information to contact the investigating officer, Detective Warrant Officer Lwazi Solombela, at 071 475 1831. The information can also be shared anonymously via Crime Stop at 08600 10111.

Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks expressed his condolences to all those who lost their homes and belongings in the fire.

“We are very grateful that there was no loss of life and would like to thank everyone who contributed to the fire-fighting efforts and helped to prevent further devastation,” he said.

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