UPDATE: Hogsback, Cathcart and Thomas River on high alert as veld fires rage

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FARMERS in the Hogsback, Upper Cathcart and Thomas River areas are on high alert as a veld fire continues to rage in the area.

The Greater Stutterheim Fire Protection Association fire protection officer Thinus Botha said a strong wind in the area, which had earlier fuelled the blaze, had fortunately died down significantly.

He said farmers in the various areas had been informed and were cooperating and assisting in fighting the fire.

No houses were currently at risk, but a few sheds were believed to have been gutted.

It was not known at present if any livestock had been lost.

“The fire is currently burning east of the N6 towards Hogsback.”

Botha said there were currently enough people helping to fight the blaze.

A further update will be provided when more information becomes available.

UPDATE: 

According to the GSFPA Manager, Pieter Rossouw, the fire is still hectic in the Upper Cathcart, Thomas River and Hogsback areas.

It is not near the Hogsback village and no evacuations have been done there.

The Amahlathi Municipality, representatives from forestry in the Eastern Cape and fire protection associations are working together “brilliantly” with “amazing teamwork” according to Rossouw.

He says the N6 is clear as the wind is blowing the smoke away from said road.

While the wind is less strong than earlier and the fire was more contained in certain sections, the general picture was bleak at present.

Helicopters are trying to drop water onto the fire but the smoke was making it difficult.

The Rep reporter

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