Mayor praises tireless firefighters

A firefighter hard at work at the University of Cape Town.

Mayor Dan Plato has expressed his gratitude to the fearless firefighters who have been battling a blaze that started in the vicinity of Rhodes Memorial yesterday morning.

One firefighter is being treated for burn wounds in hospital while others are continuing with their fire-fighting efforts.

The raging fire damaged private homes, the Rhodes Memorial Restaurant and the Mostert’s Hill windmill.

The aftermath of the fire.

The strong winds caused the fire to spread towards the University of Cape Town (UCT).

Students from the Upper Campus had to be evacuated. No student or staff members were injured.

Unfortunately, the fire reached the African Studies section of UCT’s Main Library which houses some of the oldest and rarest books about the continent.

Mayor Plato visited the site to thank those involved in firefighting efforts.

“I wish to express our gratitude for the efforts of firefighters who have been working non-stop to bring this massive fire under control. It is saddening to note that property and historic buildings have been damaged by this fire. It is tragic that literary treasures have been lost at the UCT library, but I have been informed that some of the most valuable works were saved by the quick activation of roller doors. Our attention and support remains with firefighters and all roleplayers working to protect further loss of property,” Mr Plato.

Meanwhile, residents can drop-off refreshments for the firefighters at the Roeland Street fire station.

Gift of the Givers stepped in by preparing 4000 meals for the displaced students.

This morning the organisation is receiving food and beverage items for UCT students at Old Mutual West Campus, 91 Jan Smuts Drive, Pinelands.