Our Firemen, The Heroes.
A raging fire that destroyed over 100 dwellings in the Kennedy Road informal settlement in Durban has finally been extinguished, KwaZulu-Natal emergency medical services said today.
Our heroic Durban fire fighters battled a blaze that engulfed the Informal Settlement thought to have been sparked by an illegal connection.
The fire department’s Trevor Stevens says firefighters battled the blaze for around 3 hours.
He says it was a challenge trying to reach some areas that were alight.
“We had major problems with water supplies, we had major problems with electrical connections. At times we can’t advance because the firemen are getting shocked with the illegal connections.
“At times there are sections that we left to burn because we can’t get in there with all the electricity,” he said. The fire was also being fuelled by strong winds.
Tholakele Nguse, whose shack was among the 20 that were burnt down, says she had been asleep with her two-year old son when she heard screams.
She says she awoke to find her neighbour’s home on fire. There was still a lot of smoke, she said.
“I grabbed what I could and we ran out. Then the fire just spread everywhere. We think it was started by a cable because last night we saw it sparking and we could hear it making a noise. We think there was an explosion and it started the fire.” she said.
Nguse says she will be moving into the local community hall with the little she could save.
Paramedics treated a woman who had sustained burns from the fire and was in a serious but stable condition.Paramedics said about 100 dwellings had been affected.
“There is a feeling of anguish on scene from the residents, many who have lost everything in the blaze. Many of the dwellings’ occupants are at work and will be coming home to the tragedy.”
A ward councillor would apparently meet affected residents regarding alternative accommodation, he said.
Paramedics treated a woman for burns and a man for electrical shock. We are truly grateful to the brave men of the Durban Fire Department who risk their lives to save others!