Hundreds of homeless rage through Durban township after fire


By Tsoanelo Sefoloko, GroundUp

Hundreds of people in Durban were left homeless after most of their possessions were destroyed when a fire raged through the Quarry Road township.

The fire spread quickly through the township on Thursday, destroying a total of 150 structures.

The M19 motorway was briefly closed while firefighters and other emergency services scrambled to put out the blaze. Moreover, many of the belongings that residents were able to save were scattered on the road.

The Ethekwini Municipality’s disaster management team visited the area on Friday to lend a hand.

The councilor in the area, Themba Mkhize, said that on the night of the fire, he provided a large tent which many people used to shelter from the rain.

The municipality also said that it will provide the necessary materials so that residents can rebuild their structures.

“The cause of the fire is unknown, but an investigation is underway,” the municipality said, adding that the extent of the damage is still being determined.

However, this is not the first time that a fire like this has occurred in the area.

Sindisiwe Ximba, a resident of the township, says the fires mostly start in the evening or at weekends. She had to rush home on Thursday after hearing about the fire.

“Fortunately, I always have my identity document in my handbag and that is the most important thing,” she said.

Other residents have already started to cut down burnt trees. Lungisani Bumka says it is all the bushes and trees that often help spread the fires.

  • This post is originally on GroundUp published and is used with permission on RNews.