GEORGE NEWS - Bigger clarification regarding the fires that raged in George and surrounding areas in October and November last year, will probably only be known in March, more than four months after the first fire started.
The first fire started on 24 October in Herold, spreading over the Outeniqua mountains to George.
In total, 12 fires that started independently raged for at least two weeks before the majority were brought under control. Most of the fires started naturally. At least eight people died in the Karatara area.
With 96 000 hectares destroyed the fires were described as bigger than the Knysna fires of 2017 when 22 000 hectares were destroyed.
At one stage more than 500 firefighters from all over the country were in action to help contain the fires.
Helen Zille, premier of the Western Cape, also visited the area to view the situation first-hand.
Since then there have been many enquiries from residents and interest groups about the progress of the investigation.
Freddy Thaver, Garden Route fire chief, told the George Herald this week that an investigation to establish for example the cause of the fires, is ongoing. He emphasised that it's no simple task as the fires raged over several thousand hectares.
A meeting of all the different role players and stakeholders will take place in the second week of March to discuss the origins of the fires. It will not be a public information session.
Amongst the role players that will be invited are CapeNature, SANParks, Sanral and representatives of all the local fire departments. The public will be represented by the Southern Cape Fire Protection Association.
A report will be made available to the public after the meeting. Due to the complexity of the investigation, Thaver did not want to make any information public at this stage.
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