Domestic saves baby

2014-07-17 00:00

A DOMESTIC worker dashed into a burning house and pulled a sleeping child to safety moments before smoke enveloped the house.

The upmarket family home in Wembley caught fire at around 9 am yesterday morning.

The living room, where the fire is said to have started, was scorched black by the fire and smoke. Fortunately, the fire was contained before it did any visible structural damage to the house.

Thulisile Mbelu said she was hanging up washing on the line when one of the children came running to tell her there was a fire in the house.

She called her colleague Gugu Mkhize, another of the family’s staff, and asked where the other little girl was.

“She was in her room so I just rushed in and grabbed her and rushed out. The house and her room were already filling up with smoke,” she said.

The owner of the house, who declined to give her name, said she was not sure how or when the fire started as she was out jogging when it happened.

“I am not sure what was damaged, everything is just black. I am not sure whether it is burnt or [it is from smoke damage] and needs to be cleaned.”

Rodney Trenam, the Msunduzi fire department investigator, said the fire seemed to have started next to a desk in one of the sitting rooms and went up into the ceiling and then spread through the ceiling.

“The damage from the fire is not extensive, but there is a lot of smoke damage; the whole house suffered from smoke damage,” he said.

He said they suspect a battery pack might have failed and started smouldering and caused the fire.

“While we were there, there was another fire at the table which also started smouldering.”

Another fireman said only the components of the roof of the house needed to be replaced because that was where most of the damage was.

• Thamsanqam@witness.co.za

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