CAPE TOWN - Strong winds continue to fan a fire in the Nelson Mandela Bay forcing the municipality to shut down the N2 to traffic.
Earlier students at the Woodridge College and Preparatory School were evacuated as a result of thick smoke. Some have gone to the local mall.
Four other fires that had been burning since Wednesday have been brought under control.
A blaze raging in the Van Stadens Gorge area is still spreading forcing the municipality to cut electricity connection in some parts.
Mayco member for safety and security John Best is on the scene of the fire.
“The wind has changed direction and there’s a lot of smoke in the area. At this stage there’s no threat to properties but there’s a lot of smoke. The N2 between Port Elizabeth and Jeffreys Bay has been closed because of the smoke.”
WATCH: Firefighters continue battling blaze in Buffalo Bay
Meanwhile, traffic officials have closed off a stretch of the freeway between Buffalo Bay and George.
The blaze is rapidly approaching a horse-riding and breeding community in Buffalo Bay.
The animals are being evacuated in vehicles.
Several fire trucks are moving along the N2 freeway trying to curb the spread of the wildfire.
At least 10,000 firefighters are on the ground trying to contain flare-ups that have seen the fire in the Southern Cape spread to other part of the region.
The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) says it’s continuing to assist firefighters who are battling the wildfire ravaging several areas in the Southern Cape and Eastern Cape.
The NSRI’s Craig Lambinon says, “Although the initial area that was affected is reasonably under control the flare-ups in Plettenberg Bay are now extending to areas that haven’t experienced fires yet. The accident in unrelenting, it continues… it remains a crisis.”
(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)
This article first appeared on EWN : Strong winds fan fire near PE, N2 closed