STAY SAFE WHILE OUT AND ABOUT HIKING, CYCLING OR CAMPING
Stay alert to the possibility of veld fires at all times. Be aware of your environment. Keep your mobile charged and have the local emergency services numbers saved before you venture out. Always tell someone where you will be hiking, cycling or camping and when they can expect your return. Make sure you get the requisite permit for the area you want to visit. Never make a fire outside a designated area. Should you be trapped by a fire: Stay upwind from the fires and try to make your escape through an area with sparse green vegetation. Checklist for landowners, guest farms, bush chalets, etc Before fire season • Reduce the fuel loads (like logs, leaves and pine needles) on your perimeter. • Pay special attention to fuel-load management in sloped areas. (A fire burns faster uphill than downhill.) • Construct firebreaks adjacent to the property. Building maintenance • Clear leaves and debris from gutters. • Remove inflammable and dry vegetation from under decks. • Check that hoses are long enough to reach all sides of the house. • Consider removing branches or trees that hang over the building. Garden maintenance • Cut long grass and undergrowth. • Remove dead and dry branches from trees in and around your garden. Livestock • Prepare and maintain fuel-reduced areas where livestock can be moved during a fire. During fire season Early warning systems • Be aware of weather conditions associated with high fire danger in your area (temperature, wind speed, direction and relative humidity). • Be aware of the daily fire-danger rating during the fire season. Communication • Compile a list of emergency phone numbers. • Make sure your property can be easily located by the fire brigade. Sheds and gardens • Remove inflammable materials like wood piles that are close to buildings. • Store fuel and paint in a single place away from the house. • Keep lawns short and green. • Cut grass and other vegetation under screening trees. • Remove dead leaves, dry vegetation and litter from the garden. Equipment • Store fire beaters, rakes, spades, buckets, hoses and mops in one easily accessible place. • Check pumps on a daily basis.