Fire ravages PMB store, causes R300?000 damage

2014-11-17 00:00

A MASSIVE fire swept through a Pietermaritzburg store — Babriya Cafe and Supermarket — in the early hours of Saturday, causing extensive damage.

Investigating officer Rodney Trenam of the Pietermaritzburg fire department said he could not confirm the cause of the blaze, but suspected it could be an electrical fault.

Fire department station officer Vusi Nene, who attended the scene with his team, said: “We were called to extinguish the fire at 3 am. Luckily no one was injured or found inside the store when we broke in to control the blaze.”

The devastated supermarket owner, Yusuf Patel, said that the damage amounted to around R300 000.

He stood by wordlessly as people around him salvaged goods that were only partially burnt, such as maize meal, soft drinks and other items.

“I received the news at 6 am and I rushed to see the damage caused by the fire,” said Patel.

A man employed at the supermarket, who wished to be anonymous, said he believes the fire heralds the end of his employment. “I am jobless now and there’s nothing I can do,” he said.

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