Preventing fires on Table Mountain

Preventing fires on the mountain is a collective responsibility, says Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company.

The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC) is cautioning residents, tourists and other stakeholders to take the necessary safety precautions to prevent wildfires on Table Mountain during summer.

A fire which broke out at Rhodes Memorial on April 18 last year caused significant damage to UCT’s upper campus, neighbouring properties and around 600 hectares of land within the TMNP, a statement from the TMACC said.

“Preventing fires is a collective responsibility for locals, tourists, and stakeholders alike. We must play our part in preventing and containing fires on the mountain. When a fire does break out, it often leads to the loss of life as well as damage to fauna and flora as well as damage to property,” says Wahida Parker, TMACC managing director.

Cape Town sees a lot of wind during the months of December, January and February, which make controlling veldfires difficult.

In this instance, people are advised to avoid going near the mountain at all costs and remain in a safe, fire-free area.

Only revisit the mountain when officials of TMNP have signaled that it is safe to do so again.

The first step to take when a fire does break out is to alert the relevant authorities as soon as possible. The TMNP has a specialised hotline for fires, which is 086 110 6417.

Alternatively, the City of Cape Town’s Regional Fire Control can be contacted on 021 590 1900, and the Newlands Fire Base is reachable at 021 689 7438.