Farmers suspect that veld fires were deliberate

Farmers suspect that veld fires were deliberate

13 August 2007

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South Africa — Eastern Free State farmers believe the raging veld fires were started deliberately on Thursday. Farmers battled until this morning to halt the raging blaze. Carried by strong winds it spread quickly, destroying nearly 10 000 hectares of grazing.

The blaze was only brought under control this morning as it was too difficult to reach the fire in the Sandstone Mountains.

“It’s important that farmers join the farmer’s organization which assists in unfortunate situations like these,” says the head of Bethlehem Fire Association, Charl Genis.

No deaths have been reported, but farming associations are assessing animal losses across the province.

Cape fires
Meanwhile fire-fighters are still hard at work trying to dose the fire at Karatara between Knysna and Sedgefield in the Southern Cape. Deputy manager of the MTO forestry, Karl-Heinz Niemand, says the fire is under control, but fire-fighters are continuing to hose down some flames.

Niemand says fire-fighters will continue to monitor the flanks of the fire throughout the night.

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