Six people, including three children, have died after their shack caught fire at the Moeggesukkel informal settlement, Eastern Cape, in the early hours of Thursday morning.
Police spokesperson, Priscilla Naidu said they received a distraught call about a shack that was ablaze.
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When police arrived on scene, they found the shack had already burnt to the ground with the six people inside.
According to reports, there was load shedding the night before and the family had gone to sleep without putting out the candle. The mother later woke up to the shack already gutted by the blaze.
“The woman and her husband managed to escape through a window, however, the remaining six people could not get out in time. The neighbours assisted in dousing the flames with buckets of water while waiting for the fire brigade to arrive,” said Naidu.
The woman and her husband escaped with burn wounds.
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“The mother of the children sustained burn wounds to both her arms and hands. She was treated on the scene by paramedics while the father sustained burn wounds on his face and arms. He was taken to hospital for further treatment,” added Naidu.
“The couple’s three children who were burnt inside the shack are Asciwalise Ngqina (3), Asipile Ngqina (6) and Ibanathi Ngqina (11). The names of the three adults, between 22 and 48 years, are withheld until police trace their next of kin.”
An inquest docket has been opened and people are urged to put out candles, gas and primus stoves before going to bed to avoid such tragedies.
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