Man arrested in connection with Overstrand fire which has caused one fatality

Police have confirmed the arrest of a 34-year-old man in connection with the runaway wildfires that have been burning in the Overstrand region of the Western Cape.

The blaze, which started on New Year's Eve, is believed to have been sparked when someone illegally set off a flare.

Read also: Police to investigate whether flare caused Betty's Bay and Pringle Bay fires

Police are expected to meet with the Overstrand Municipality before any more information about the arrest can be shared, reports Open News journalist Natalie Malgas.

Fireworks and flares had been banned in the area over the holiday season for environmental reasons.

The flare was set off illegally because there is a ban on all fireworks and flares over the festive season, given how dry the region is and how dangerous [it could be].

Natalie Malgas, Open News reporter

Malgas says at least 20 fire-fighting teams have been strategically positioned at hotspot areas along the mountain slopes to battle flare-ups as the winds remain unpredictable.

Some residents in the Pringle Bay and Betty's Bay areas were earlier forced to evacuate when strong winds drove flames towards their properties. They have since returned home.

Malgas says details around the death of a Pringle Bay resident as a result of the fire, are not yet clear.

Listen for more on the latest developments:


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