Byline: Kelebogile Masemola

18 May 2022

Community members of Soshanguve, Block H in Tshwane were woken up by a cloud of smoke from a house next to Caltex petrol station which has been burned to ashes due to a faulty municipal electrical pole.

This horrific incident took place this morning, at around 4h00 and the fire still persisted.

The Tshwane Fire Department has dispatched a team of fighter to stop the fire.

The fire fighters are still at the scene trying to put out the fire.

The family that lost their house due to the fire break-out run a business of fixing and selling tires of which some of the tires were able to be saved.

According to Deputy Chief and Spokesperson of the Tshwane Emergency Services, Mr. Charles Mabaso, the TES received a call at around 5h00 this morning where they were informed of a house on fire in Soshanguve block H.

“Upon arrival, fire fighters found a house that was totally ablaze with  stacks of tyres near the house which were also on fire.

They then started with fire fighting and they are continuing with the firefighting.

Meanwhile  most parts of the house has been burned down either than a garage therefore a family of 10(ten) has been affected  and we are currently getting the break-down of the ages of all the family members who were affected,” said Mabaso.

Mabaso stated further that there are allegations that an electrical pole could have activated the Fire Safety Officer and the Electricity Department to investigate as well as the Social Development and Disaster Management department who have also been activated for support of the family.

“Although the firefighting  is still continuing and the fire remains under control outside more specifically the tires and a TLB has been requested from the utility services so that we can open space so that we can extinguish the fire because we can estimate that the fire has been putout only to find out that it is still alive under the tires,” added Mabaso in closing.

According to Mrs Flora Nkele Malahlela the electrical pole catches fire most of the time, today was the third time it caught fire and their neighbours have always come out with buckets of water to put the fire out but today’s fire was just too strong.

“So today in the morning I was preparing water for my granddaughter to go to school when I saw the pole burning from the bathroom window and I called for help because there was gas in the house, the neighbours came out in numbers to try and put out the fire but it was too strong, that is when the fire station was contacted and three vehicles were dispatched to come and assist.

I live with my husband, my daughter and seven grandchildren who are between the ages of 4, 11, 12, 16, 14, 18 and 20.

We have lost everything as we were not able to save anything from the house, our furniture, clothes, identity documents, certificates, bank card, medication and school books have all been destroyed by the fire” Malahlela said.

For those who would like to assist this aggrieved family with groceries, clothes, toiletries and money to give them a clean start, kindly contact them on 083 438 7158.

Comment by Mr. Mabaso (Deputy Chief and Spokesperson of Tshwane EMS)