Myriads displaced following Joe Slovo Informal Settlement fire

Over 300 structures were destroyed and about 1 200 people are displaced, after a fire ripped through the Joe Slovo informal settlement in Langa, on Saturday evening.

Mayco member for Safety and Security, JP Smith says the fire was reported shortly before 6p.m, and was extinguished by midnight

No injuries or deaths has been reported, and authorities are trying to ascertain the cause of the fire.

‘’The City’s Fire & Rescue Services responded to a fire in Langa at 17:55 on Saturday, the 16th of April. The first arriving officer immediately called for more resources and in total, there were 10 fire engines and seven water tankers on the scene, with approximately 70 staff who managed to contain and extinguish the blaze just before midnight,’’ said Mayco member for Safety and Security, JP Smith

Smith says a crowd had formed and that some community members  prevented staff from extinguishing the fire.

‘’Law enforcement, Metro Police, and the South African Police [Services] were also on the scene to disperse unruly crowds to protect the firefighting staff. The cause of the fire has not yet been established and while no injuries or fatalities have been reported a number of people were left displaced.’’

Explosions went off during the fire. Smith says this is due to gas cylinders.

‘’Some have noted that there were explosions during the fire and the fire department indicated that those were likely LPG gas cylindes used for cooking purposes that exploded during the blaze.’’

Mayco member for water and sanitation, Zahid Badroodien says a Joint Operation committee will be activated on Sunday morning to assess the number of families affected and the extent of the relief that they will deliver to those in need.

In addition, says Badroodien, one vehicle of each LEAP area will be deployed to Langa to assist and support the teams on the ground


PICTURE - CoCT: Aerial view of the extent damages caused at Joe Slovo Informal Settlement, Langa

Done By: Mitchum George


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