“In the early hours of this morning (Sunday), at around 1am, the city’s Fire and Rescue Services responded to a fire in Masiphumelele, where an extensive area of reeds and informal structures caught alight,” she said.
About 800 informal structures were destroyed as well as one double- and two single-storey houses. One man and a woman died in one informal structure. About 3 000 people were displaced.
Disaster Risk Management and the SA Red Cross were on the scene to co-ordinate relief efforts, including providing food, baby packs, mattresses and blankets. The Masiphumelele Community Hall had been opened for emergency shelter, De Lille said.
Fourteen fire-fighting vehicles were deployed to the scene where 65 Fire and Rescue Services staff and support staff were assisted by Table Mountain National Parks.
The fire was extinguished at around 6am on Sunday morning and crews were currently busy with mop-up operations and ensuring that the area was safe.
At this stage the cause of the fire was unknown and the incident was handed over the SAPS for investigation.
In another incident, a fire broke out in Joe Slovo in Langa at around 11pm on Saturday, where about 125 structures were destroyed, leaving 500 people displaced. One man sustained fatal injuries.
The fire was extinguished at around 3.30am on Sunday. Affected residents were currently staying with friends and family.
The Mustadafin Foundation was on the scene providing relief, including food and blankets, to affected residents.
“I would like to extend my deepest condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones in these tragedies.
“We are in the midst of our fire season and I appeal to all residents to exercise extra caution during this time to ensure their safety,” De Lille said. – African News Agency