Four people died in two separate shack fire incidents in Johannesburg in the early hours of Tuesday, the City of Johannesburg emergency medical services (EMS) said.
EMS spokesperson Robert Mulaudzi said the first fire was reported in Orange Farm at around 1am where a man lost his life when his back room shack caught fire.
Mulaudzi said the second fire claimed the lives of a family of three, two adults and one child, when their five bedroom shack caught fire in Matholesville, Roodepoort.
“In both fire incidents no other injuries were reported and the cause of the fire incidents still a subject of investigations,” he said.
Mulaudzi cautioned Johannesburg residents to look after all heating devices to prevent fire incidents.
On Sunday, one person died and about 100 others were left homeless after a shack fire at an informal settlement in Fleurhof, Randburg.
Over 40 shacks were engulfed in flames.
At the time, City of Johannesburg EMS spokesperson Nana Radebe-Kgiba said crews were alerted about multiple shacks on fire at around 3am.
“Two fire engines and a water tanker were dispatched and on arrival the shacks were gutted with flames,” she said at the time.
“Firefighters battled with flames because of windy conditions and fire hydrants with low pressure. While conducting search and rescue, the crews discovered one person who died.”
Although the cause of the fire is still being looked into, rumours suggest that it may have been started by a fight between a couple or an unattended candle.
Church and community leaders flocked to the scene to provide aid to the victims.
According to a local church leader, they decided to provide warm meals and temporary shelter in a form of a tent for those who have been left homeless.
“We intend to allow some of the victims’ temporary accommodation until a solution is found to the problem. We intend to provide them with warm meals. We are appealing to people to donate what they can,” said the church leader.