|Department calls on farmers and land users to be prepared for Veld Fires|
The Northern Cape Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development is calling on farmers and land users to be alert, and prepare for the fire season which is upon us. The priority must be to reduce the risk of veld fires as well as preparedness to combat veld fires that might occur. In the 2010/11 financial about 130 000 hectares of grazing land in Frances Baard and John Taolo Gaetsewe Districts were consumed by veld fires.
Annually, veld fires result in disastrous loss of natural grazing land, animals and in some instance it has lead to the loss of human life. The department is also making a plea to motorist not to throw away live cigarettes butts through car windows.
These sporadic fires are in the main caused by the aridness of grass and scrub as well as the prevailing winds. The dryness of vegetation coupled with the winds that are constantly changing directions creates perfect conditions for runaway veld fires to ignite.
It is unfortunate that thousands of hectares of farm land has already been destroyed in some of the provinces. Hundreds farm animals have perished and regrettably loss of human life has also occurred. The department is closely monitoring the situation in the province and ready to deploy resources and personnel to assist in dealing with outbreaks of fires on farms. End
DATE: 30 AUGUST 2011