Firefighters hold the line as blazes abound – Cape Town

Fire service have responded to more than 2 500 incidents since the beginning of December

Firefighters hold the line as blazes abound

20 December 2023

The City’s Fire & Rescue Service is in the midst of a very busy period, with numerous informal settlement fires in recent days, as well as the ongoing efforts to subdue the massive vegetation fire still raging in Simon’s Town.

Since the beginning of December, the Fire Service has responded to more than 2 500 incidents, including fires and special service calls like motor vehicle accidents and trauma cases.

Of these, 60% (1 500) have been vegetation fires.

It’s also an increase year on year, where the corresponding period had just over 2 000 fires, with nearly 1 100 of these being vegetation fires.

I want to commend our firefighters for being on the front lines to defend lives and property – in spite of the many challenges.

Each incident, whether a vegetation fire or a structural fire, comes with its own complexities and the City remains committed to serving communities across the metropole.

Currently, firefighting efforts continue in Simon’s Town, involving City staff but also numerous other agencies.

Staff fought throughout the night to protect homes and other structures, while some precautionary evacuations took place in the vicinity of Barnard and Victory Street.

Those who were evacuated have started moving back to their homes.

As things stand, more than 200 firefighters are still on the ground in Simon’s Town, along with a fleet of City firefighting equipment including 20 pumps, four water tankers and four skids.

In addition, the Table Mountain National Park has five tankers and one skid on site, along with various ground teams.

The fire is not yet contained, but the situation is more manageable, and five aerial support craft returned early this morning to assist with water-bombing efforts.

I applaud not only the firefighters from the City, but those from TMNP, NCC, WOF, VWS and DRM volunteers.

While the cause of the fire is not yet known, I want to urge residents and visitors to be cautious at all times.

Residents are reminded to phone 021 480 77 00 from a cell phone and 107 from a landline to report any emergency.

Issued by Media Office, City of Cape Town, 20 December 2023