Shacks gutted as primus stove blows up

SHACK dwellers at the Cato Crest informal settlement watched in horror as their belongings went up in flames.

SHACK dwellers at the Cato Crest informal settlement watched in horror as their belongings went up in flames.

The dwellers looked on helplessly as Durban Metro Fire battled for more than four hours to control the fire from spreading after a 16-year-old girl tried to light a primus stove and it exploded.

The teenager was taken to Wentworth Hospital and treated for burn wounds.

Max Magnussen of Metro Fire said the fire started at about 8am yesterday .

Shack dweller André Njisane said he received a call while at work saying that his shack was on fire.

"I raced back here but it was too late. Everything is gone," said Njisane.

The chairperson of the Cato Crest Residents Association, Thembinkosi Qumbelo said the fires were nothing new.

Magnussen said the fire was difficult to fight because of strong winds.

Netcare 911 spokesperson Jeff Wicks said the injured refused to be taken to hospital as they wanted to salvage belongings from their burning shacks.

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