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Fire guts Westham Secondary School's science lab in Phoenix

A classroom at Westham Secondary School in Phoenix, Durban was gutted by a fire. Picture: Facebook

A classroom at Westham Secondary School in Phoenix, Durban was gutted by a fire. Picture: Facebook

Published Feb 21, 2022

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DURBAN - Pupils at Westham Secondary School in Phoenix are without a science laboratory after a fire ripped through the classroom on Sunday night.

Durban Fire Department Divisional Commander Jesse Yasudas said one classroom in a block consisting of that and two other classrooms caught alight.

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Yasudas said the fire was contained and extinguished rapidly by firefighters, but the infrastructure including the roof was damaged.

He said there were no injuries, but the school equipment and school furniture were destroyed by fire.

“The cause of the fire is being investigated including allegations that it might have been an electrical fault,” he said.

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A classroom at Westham Secondary School in Phoenix, Durban was gutted by a fire. Picture supplied by LECS Protection Services

KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education spokesperson Muzi Mahlambi said the incident was under investigation and a report was being made.

A report by a private security company stated that in the early hours of Sunday a “mysterious fire” broke out on the premises of Westham Secondary School in Phoenix.

Sector 6 CPF members, LECS Protection Services, HiTech, and 911 were standing down at the scene attempting to assist.

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The report said the Phoenix Fire Department managed to contain and extinguish the fire before major damage was done to the infrastructure of the school building.

The origins of the fire are as yet unclear. The school declined for any pictures to be taken of the damaged classroom and turned away a reporter and photographer.

Speaking during an update on school readiness last week, MEC for Education in the province, Kwazi Mshengu, said a total of 186 schools were damaged, 90 of them requiring serious attention and the deployment of mobile classrooms.

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