Fireman assaulted, fire hoses cut by 'drunken hooligans'

2017-11-12 12:05
Fireman battle a blaze which broke out at the Foreman Road informal settlement in Durban (Supplied)

Fireman battle a blaze which broke out at the Foreman Road informal settlement in Durban (Supplied)

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Durban – A firefighter was assaulted and two firehoses were vandalised as fire crews battled a blaze at the Foreman Road informal settlement in Durban in the early hours on Sunday morning.

Two children were injured and over a thousand people displaced, the area's Community Policing Forum (CPF) said on Sunday.

"Initially when the fire was being put out, someone hit one of the firemen with a crowbar and knocked him out," said Satish Dhupelia, a member of the Sydenham CPF as well as the outreach officer of the Gandhi Development Trust.

"At 02.45 a fire started… The fire was only contained by 04.30 because of a few hooligans who assaulted a fireman and cut some hoses," added Dhupelia.

At first, the firemen were able to contain the fire as it was confined to a small area.

However, "while the firemen were attacking the fire, they were being attacked by drunken, idiotic people".

After the one fireman was knocked out, the group had to retreat and wait for public order policing to arrive.

This caused a delay, but as the firefighters tackled the blaze again with police protection, vandals then cut their hosepipes twice, Dhupelia said.

By the time the fire was extinguished, two children needed to be hospitalised.

The fire destroyed more than 100 shacks and led to the displacement of approximately 1 000 people.

No arrests were made as the culprits were able to escape in the dark, Dhupelia said.

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