Entire family dies in fire

2019-05-23 06:00

A Town Two family is still in shock after a 37-year-old mother and her three children were killed when their house caught fire on Tuesday morning (21 May).

The fire started while Thwayisa Myataza and her kids Nandile (14), Lindokuhle (5) and Linamandla (3) were sleeping.

It is believed the fire was caused by an explosion in the electricity meter box.

Myataza’s brother Thobela Maqungo (41) sustained injuries and was taken to the Khayelitsha District Hospital.

Jermaine Carelse, spokesperson for the City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue, said fire fighters were called to the scene around 05:00.

He said three fire engines, a rescue vehicle and 14 staff members were sent to the scene.

“The fire was extinguished, one woman, three children passed away as a result of smoke inhalation and one man sustained burn wounds and was transported to hospital,” said Carelse.

He said the cause of the fire is still unknown.

Lingelethu West police spokesperson Sergeant Xoliswa Nyalambisa said they received a complaint of a burning house in Town Two.

On arrival, she said they spoke to the house owner (Maqungo) who explained the fire started in the electricity meter box.

Nyalambisa said the owner explained that he managed to escape through the window. She added the man told them that his sister and her three children were still trapped inside the house.

She said an inquest docket has been opened.

Thwayisa’s heartbroken cousin, Neliswa Magwala, said it was not the first time the box caused problems for the family.

“This is the second time the box is exploding. On the first occasion, it only burnt a couch. It was reported and was fixed but this time it took lives,” she said.

Magwala said the five people were sleeping in different rooms when the fire broke out.

She added that it looks like some of the deceased tried to escape as their charred bodies were found on the floor.

“This is very painful for us as a family because we lost people we love and it is never easy for one to see dead bodies of family members lying like that,” said a grieving Magwala.

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