Firefighters battle to comprise blaze on South Africa’s Desk Mountain

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2021-04-19 15:45:13

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Firefighters control a raging fireplace on the slopes of Desk Mountain, in Cape City South Africa, Monday, April 19, 2021. Residents within the Vredehoek suburb have been evacuated as a precautionary measure as excessive winds fanned the hearth for a second day.
Picture Credit score: AP

Cape City: South African emergency staff have began evacuating three 17-storey residential buildings overlooking Cape City metropolis as a wildfire fanned by robust winds continues to burn uncontrolled alongside Desk Mountain, metropolis officers stated on Monday.

The fireplace began early Sunday morning on the slopes of Devils’ Peak, one other a part of Cape City’s mountainous backdrop, forcing College of Cape City college students to evacuate residences as runaway flames set a number of campus buildings ablaze, together with a library housing historic books and scripts.

Round 250 firefighters are battling to manage the blaze, as robust winds floor helicopters usually utilized in firebombing sorties. A thick plume of smoke is obscuring visibility all through the town centre.

Different properties broken contains the favored hikers’ restaurant at Rhodes memorial and the thatch-roofed Mostert Mill, constructed round 1796 and South Africa’s oldest working mill.

Unfold quickly

Two firefighters sustained burn wounds and have been hospitalised for remedy, officers stated, as a change in wind path noticed the hearth unfold quickly in direction of the town bowl in a single day.

“Catastrophe threat administration employees and volunteers have began evacuating Disa Park in Vredehoek,” metropolis officers stated. The similar Disa Park residential buildings sit near the foot of the mountain and overlook the central enterprise district.

All faculties within the Vredehoek space have been requested to evacuate, a catastrophe administration spokeswoman stated, including that properties used to accommodate travelling cupboard ministers in Walmer Property have been additionally being cleared.

Metropolis officers confirmed one suspect was detained final evening on Satan’s Peak amid hypothesis that extra fires could have been began and whether or not the unique fireplace was intentionally lit in an act of arson.

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