Kouga Fire Department makes headway on bush-clearing!

Bush-fires affect the entire community and can have a devastating, wide-spread effect on individuals, businesses, industry and facilities. We all have a joint civic responsibility to take whatever measures are necessary to protect our community. The good news is that our Fire Department has made great progress in reducing the overgrown bush that represents a major fire risk to our community!

The Fire Department now has a formal plan in place that will guide bush-clearing until at least February 2021. To date, the focus has been primarily on alien vegetation, with indigenous vegetation also being cleared when it represents a risk.

Many of you will have seen the recent clearing activity in and around the Irma Booysen Reserve and Reservoir Road, as well as some private properties where complaints have been received. Next on their agenda are private residential stands that require attention. Clearing the first batch of 38 stands has already been scheduled and the Municipality will recover the clearing costs from the stand owners.

Many owners of overgrown stands appear to have adopted the view that “if I ignore it for long enough, it will go away”. Unfortunately, it won’t. Unless, of course, we have another bush-fire. Keeping your stand in a safe condition is a legal requirement. And yes, it costs money. But the longer you delay clearing, the more dense the vegetation becomes. And the more dense the vegetation becomes, the more it will cost you to clear it. With the right of ownership comes a duty of care.

By far the easiest and most cost-effective solution is to contact one of the many local clearing contractors. If you know that your property needs attention, take action before receiving a notice. If you’re not sure, contact the St Francis Bay Property Owners Association (SFPO) which has a dedicated Bush Clearing portfolio. Contact Lyn Aitken on 042 294 0594 or Nick Munday at nick@munday.global .

Alternatively, contact Trevor Wright, a member of the municipal Fire Risk Reduction Committee. Trevor offers a local bush clearing project management service that includes plot inspections, sourcing of quotations, overseeing and signing-off the work and liaison with the Fire Department. Contact Trevor on 076 589 0014.

If you decide to do the clearing yourself, please note that all cuttings need to be chipped, or removed to the Humansdorp dump. Simply leaving them in place, or dumping them in the bush, creates a bigger risk.

Please take bush-clearing seriously! Lives and properties are at stake…

Media Release – Nick Munday

Need Assistance

Trevor Wright, a member of the municipal Fire Risk Reduction Committee, offers a local bush clearing project management service that includes plot inspections, sourcing of quotations, overseeing and signing-off the work and liaison with the Kouga Municipality Fire Department. – Contact Trevor on 076 589 0014.

And please don’t cut the Milkwood Trees down



Matt MacGillivray stoked at being included

The World Surf League (WSL) Australian Grand Slam of Surfing series has issued a Green Alert for the Tweed Coast Pro to run this Sunday, 13 September. A moderate East swell is forecast for the region over the weekend and into next week. It should make for favourable conditions at Cabarita Beach for the event to run over two days on Sunday and Monday. 

JBay surfer Matthew McGillivray decided to stay in Australia when the national lockdown kicked in back home in South Africa. He subsequently earned a slot in the Tweed Coast Pro as one of the top-ranked 2019 non-Australian Qualifying Series surfers and will surf in Round 1, Heat 4 against Ryan Callinan and Morgan Cibilic.

Matt MacGillivray

Matt in action © WSL/Keoki

“I’m so happy to be included in this event. I was hoping that there would still be a few contests this year, and this is why I first decided to stay on in Australia. I’m really grateful WSL has given me this opportunity to surf in the Australian Grand Slam,” said McGillivray.

Making excellent use of his time in Australia, Rip Curl surfer McGillivray has been training hard and fine-tuning his competitive act for the relaunch of the Championship Tour.

“I’ve linked up with a good trainer here in Australia and feel like, in the end, things have worked out for the best for my career at this stage,” said McGillivray. “It will be nice to compete again and get some more practice in.” 

McGillivray agrees that he is definitely spoilt with great waves back home. “I’m trying to improve my physical strength and fitness as well as my surfing technique,” said McGillivray. “The only difficult thing in Australia is that it’s not as spoilt with waves as South Africa is, so wave quality makes the actual surfing part more challenging.” 

It has been a long time between surfing tournaments, and there is much excitement around these Grand Slam events. McGillivray, along with Jordy Smith, qualified for the 2020 Championship Tour, but it was cancelled as a result of the COVID epidemic. The qualified surfers will commence the 2021 season from their 2019 end-of-year results.

For more on the Tweed Coast Pro Specialty Event – https://www.worldsurfleague.com/events/2020/spec/3574/tweed-coast-pro-mens

For more on McGillivray, check out his role in the hilarious new Rip Curl video Postcards from Morgs –