The city prepares for fire season

Fri, 07/28/2023 – 09:00
The Disaster Management Department of the City of Windhoek has proactively taken measures to prevent and prepare for field fires. These efforts involve strategically placed firebreaks, which resemble gravel roads, to serve as robust barriers, impeding the spread of fires and acting as protective firewalls. Alongside considering wind direction and vegetation, the meticulously maintained firebreaks effectively impede the rapid spread of fires and ensure convenient accessibility for firefighting teams.

 

These precautions hold significant importance during the annual winter fire season, when the heightened dryness of grass makes it more susceptible to ignition. In collaboration with the fire brigade, the department identifies fire-prone areas and works towards the completion of firebreaks. Disaster Risk Management Officer, Pascal Munikonzo explained that this comprehensive approach not only safeguards human lives and property but also contributes to the conservation of diverse wildlife populations, including kudus and leopards. The fire breaks cover a distance of 40 km in the areas of Ludwigsdorf and Eros.

 

According to Senior Station Officer for Community Safety Awareness and Education, Fillipus Sikongo, this year’s vegetation growth presents a lot of dry biomass (grass) that can burn and quickly turn into a big, uncontrollable bushfire. “Unlike many other hazards, most bushfires are caused by human activity and can be avoided”, he says. Sikongo urges residents in fire-prone areas to plan and avoid destruction to the environment and damage to properties as a result of veld fires in and around the city of Windhoek.

COW