Alex fire: Community leaders appeal to Home Affairs for help

One shack caught fire on Friday after electricity was restored in the area - a blaze that rapidly spread and destroyed 200 other homes.

About 200 homes were on fire in Alexandra on 24 June 2022. Picture: Dominic Majola/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Community leaders in Alexandra are appealing to the Home Affairs department to assist them in applying for identity documents as well as children's birth certificates after more than 200 homes were gutted in a fire.

One shack caught fire on Friday after electricity was restored in the area - a blaze that rapidly spread and destroyed other homes.

The damage from the blaze is extensive, and some nearby houses have also been affected.

Emergency services said there were no fatalities or injuries in the incident.

This is the second informal settlement within a month to be gutted by fire during this cold unforgiving weather. Two weeks ago, residents in Kwa Mai Mai suffered the same fate when hundreds of homes were engulfed by fire.

Eyewitness News spoke to one of the residents in Alexandra who said he was not even aware of the fire because he was at work when it started.

“When I arrived here, I found that my room is burnt out there is nothing inside. I have got only my jacket and these clothes which I’m putting on. It’s a disaster, in fact it’s a disaster. We don’t know where to sleep and it's cold.’’

Emergency services said they will try to find alternative accommodation for those who have lost their homes.

“We have disaster management, they are still busy doing a head count of the people that are living in that area and they’ll find an alternative place, and also organise food and matrasses and blankets for them as a temporary solution.’’