Deadly wildfires ravage SA tourist route

Cape Town, Tuesday

At least seven people have been killed in a raging fire along South Africa’s popular Garden Route in the Western Cape province, officials say.

“The fire remains active on the slopes,” Lauren Howard from Working on Fire said about their operation in the mountainous suburb in George city.

The Garden Route is a 300km scenic stretch of road popular with tourists. It is not clear whether any foreign nationals have been affected by the fires.

George city officials say at least 200 residents have been moved to a hall and that three suburbs, housing more than 1,500 people, have been evacuated as a precaution. “There will be food, a place to sleep and social services… the medical services are there to look at people who may be struggling to breathe,” Brent-Styan from Western Cape Local Government Department said.

More than 400 firefighters have been battling the blaze 450km east of Cape Town, which has so far burned over 16,600 hectares since last week.  -BBC

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