Thank you very much for your quick and efficient response to our request for aerial assistance during the Oudekraal Fire.
Due to the inaccessibility of the terrain, prevalence of significant invasive alien vegetation and the strong south-easterly wind, the fire which started on Wednesday the 11th October quickly spread in the direction of Bakoven residential area. During the course of Thursday afternoon on the 12th October at approximately 14:25, a large flare-up was reported on the right flank which was driven by a strong and erratic northerly wind. The fire spread rapidly in a southerly direction towards the Twelve Apostles Hotel, threatening the hotel, the Apostles Battery, Suikerbossie as well as the Ruyteplaats Estate.
The first helicopter from George arrived on Friday morning the 13th October at approximately 09:24 and was immediately deployed on the right flank of the fire where the biggest threat to living and property was.
The use of aerial assistance in protecting life and property is indisputable especially within TMNP where SANParks is managing a national park within an urban environment with some of the most expensive real estate in the country.
The fact that you were able to gather these aerial resources on such a short notice is appreciated and commendable as well as the agreement by the partners to release these aircraft on your request.
Also please convey our thanks and appreciation to Frank Smook and your pilots for their excellent flying and their willingness to always assist.
Table Mountain National Park