Around 200 homes destroyed in Alexandra fire, Johannesburg
City of Johannesburg fire fighters extinguished a fire that burned down about 200 homes in Alexandra on Friday, 24 June 2022. Distraught residents watched helplessly as their belongings were engulfed in flames. The fire is alleged to have been started after the power was restored to the area causing the grid to overload. The damage from the fire is extensive and some homes nearby have also been affected. Many residents of the destroyed homes were at work and were unaware of what had happened.
Johannesburg Emergency Services’ spokesperson, Nana Radebe, said the disaster management team was on-site to try and assist the affected residents. "At this moment, Disaster Management is still busy making sure that everyone is accounted for. Fortunately, there have not been any reports of injuries or fatalities. We will do preliminary investigations on what caused the fire."
This is the second informal settlement within a month to be gutted by fire during this cold unforgiving weather. Two weeks ago, residents in Kwa Mai Mai suffered the same fate when hundreds of homes were engulfed by fire.
Alexandra residents urged not to rebuild in same area
Johannesburg Emergency Services is urging residents from Alexandra, where close to 200 homes were burnt down, not to rebuild their homes in the same area for their safety.
The EMS said that many residents had decided to return to the section that went up in flames, saying that their belongings were still there and did not want to move.
Johannesburg EMS spokesperson Nana Radebe, "There is a temporary shelter that was organised, which is not far from where the fire happened that is nearby but only a few tents to sleep in on Friday and others resorted to go and sleep with friends and family. Some have said that they still have belongings there and they will be starting to move those. By Friday, we had resolved that everyone must come out and we are still busy with investigations."