The first detailed report on the Knysna fire earlier in 2017 was recently released.
In addition to the tragic loss of human life, the estimated cost to repair the damage along the garden route is somewhere in the region of R496 million.
In Knysna alone the estimated cost is:
- Health – R 1, 256 million
- Agriculture – R40 million
- Human Settlements – R44,920 million
- Local Government – R91 573 175
- Environmental affairs – R134.89 million
The big question, however, is how the fire was started. According to the report, the fire was started by human activity, but there is no evidence to suggest that it was started deliberately. The investigative duties have now been handed over to the SAPS.
A scientific probe suggests that the fire most likely started with pine cones on private land.