This morning shortly after 10am a Metrorail Train travelling between Sunnycove and Glencairn stations caught alight. Emergency services were on scene quickly to attend to the blaze and did an admirable job containing it and separating the remaining carriages and hauling then away.
Unfortunately with high winds and soaring temparatures, embers from the smouldering carriages carried across Simonstown Road and a fire broke out on the mountainside above the False Bay Gun Club. The fire quickly spread through dense alien vegetation lower down before setting alight indigenous fynbos and rapidly spread up the mountainside towards Elsies Peak.
The fire department responded swiftly and moved ahead of the fire to tackle it above the homes in Cockburn Close on Glencairn Heights. Three choppers with water carriers arrived shortly thereafter. The strong winds continued to aid the fire in gaining momentum and quickly moved across the upper part of Elsies Peak and down towards the Upper Fish Hoek mountainside with Echo, Mountain and Berg Roads being the worst affected.
Visibility near the mountain was extremely poor and dangerous for the choppers to drop their payload safely so they were forced to return to base.
The fire at this time 9.30pm has been brought under control but is still smouldering in many places with occasional flare ups across Elsies Peak on both sides of the mountain.
The Fire Department is on scene and are being ably assisted by SAN Parks fire fighters and the Volunteer Wildfire Services. They will continue to monitor and stay on the front line overnight.
Let’s hope that tomorrow brings better news.
All photos by Scott Tait
Thanks for reading and share if you enjoyed