The EXPRESS asked residents what should be done to prevent shack fires in Jumpas informal settlement. Two fires on March 4 left more than 400 people homeless.
“The spacing of the shacks is a problem because we build so close to each other and that is why the fire spreads quickly. We need a way to escape the fire and maybe save homes.”
“I suggest that the emergency services provide every shack with a fire extinguisher because the bucket system is not effective. Sometimes the water is not enough because people forget to fill up the bucket.”
“More training needs to be provided on how residents should handle a fire while waiting for the fire brigade, and also spacing between the shacks is needed to be able to move between the shacks to extinguish the fire.”
“Disaster management should offer training to the unemployed youth on how to properly extinguish a fire. That way we can have them on site during a fire and know what to do and not panic.”
“The Department of Human Settlements needs to provide building material that will not catch fire quickly. Some residents use material that burns easily as they cannot afford iron sheets.”