The City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue services handed out smoke alarms and fire extinguishers to the residents of Bonnytown, an informal settlement in Wynberg, on Thursday January 23.
Sylwin Rossouw, fire instructor and platoon commander for the City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Services, said they were supplying informal settlements with smoke alarms and fire extinguishers to “minimise fires and to help prevent deaths”.
Bonnytown was one of 443 registered informal settlements where workshops were conducted to teach residents how to act in a fire situation and how to use fire extinguishers. They were also encouraged
to assist each other in an emergency.
“They have been given the equipment to put out a fire, but they should also phone the fire brigade to make sure the fire is completely out,” said Mr Rossouw.
He said the aim of the initiative was also to establish how many fires occurred in informal settlements and to develop relationships with the community leaders.
Bonnytown community leader Monica Allie, known as Mona, said fires often occurred on the open field next to them. “They just leave the fire after they burn copper wires, especially people who don’t even live there.”
Ms Allie said two weeks ago a house had caught alight due to a suspected electrical fault, but neighbours had worked together to ensure the fire was contained before the fire brigade arrived.
“We had to break down the house when we saw smoke coming out. We phoned the fire department. But the community stood together and used buckets of water to put out the fire while we were waiting on the fire trucks to come to make sure the fire was put out completely,” she said.
She added that they were pleased with the equipment and the informative workshop they were offered which they had benefited from.
In case of a fire emergency call 107 or 021 480 7700.