GEORGE NEWS - Fire and weather conditions gave municipal and emergency services personnel little chance for a breather over the past weekend. Rosemoor in particular seemed to bear the brunt with three devastating fires, with a Somali shop owner losing everything and a cat barely surviving the blaze.
After a house burned down in Canary Street, Rosemoor Saturday evening, residents said they have had enough. There are people who continue to put their neighbourhood in danger by starting house fires haphazardly and instead of being taken to task, just receive a new shack erected by the municipality.
Thamsanqa Jantjies, a former councillor of this area, who lives next door to the house that burned down, said there is no doubt that the fire was caused by a troublesome man who resides in that yard.
"We are fed up and are now busy with a petition that will be sent to the George Municipality to ask them not to put up a temporary shack there again, as this is not the first time that we have a house fire in that same yard. This is putting our neighbourhood in danger."
Firefighters were also called out to a house fire at 75 Hurter Street, Rosemoor on Sunday morning. The shacks situated in the backyard were engulfed in flames. This included a Somalian owned shop, which completely burned out with everything inside. It is unclear what led to the fire, but, similar to the Canary Street fire, rumour has it that a troublesome young man who lived in one of the shacks was responsible.
A ginger cat was rescued from this fire by George firefighters, assisted by a member of the public. The Garden Route SPCA fetched the cat and it's currently being treated by a veterinarian. According to the SPCA, it will take a long time for "Gingie" to heal, but he should make a full recovery. (See article elsewhere)No one was injured.
The Conville police have not made any arrests as they suspect no foul play in any of the incidents at this stage. However, the investigations are ongoing.
The George Municipality said strong gusting winds and rainfall kept them very busy from Friday 1 June. Communications officer Debra Sauer said the George fire brigade handled 26 call-outs from the early hours of Friday morning until Sunday.
On Friday they attended to three veld fires, four accidents, two house fires, an electricity pole that had been destroyed by fire in Borcherds and a tree that had fallen over in Cradock Street.
On Sunday, the fire brigade attended to a shack fire in Thembalethu, four house fires in Borcherds, Thembalethu, Rosemoor and Cradock Street. They also attended to one accident scene in the George industrial area.
"The Electrotechnical Directorate had to attend to several power outages due to the severe weather and branches falling on power lines. The outages occurred mostly in farming areas.
The Civil Engineering Directorate attended to a water main burst in Eleventh Avenue, George East on Sunday, as well as sewer blockages across town," said Sauer.
'We bring you the latest George, Garden Route news'