Hazardous drive for motorists as veld-fire smoke covers road

Hazardous drive for motorists as veld-fire smoke covers road

30 May 2006

published by www.pretorianews.co.za

Pretoria, South Africa — The main road from the city to Atteridgeville was enveloped in thick smoke from a veld fire yesterday morning.

Motorists were forced to drive cautiously as flames came close to their vehicles and the visibility was extremely poor.

Drivers had to switch on their lights in order to navigate their way through the smoke.

The veld fire adjacent to a stretch of Church Street was fanned by the wind.

Emergency Services spokes- man Johan Pieterse said at the moment the veld around the city was dry as well as long, due to the extended rainy season. “People must avoid these open veld fires and report them immediately.

“Normally they are started by homeless people who light open fires to keep warm. These fires must be extinguished by smothering the flames with sand.

“Don’t set grass alight near houses either as you can be fined for arson. With the winds the grass fires spread quickly. When smoke goes over a road as was the case yesterday morning, people must slow down and drive carefully. Switch on your headlights on and if necessary put on your hazards too,” said Pieterse.

He warned motorists to be wary of smoke inhalation. “We have grass units who concentrate on these fires alone,” he said.


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