Flames of tragedy: Devastating blaze engulfs Johannesburg building, claims 52 Lives

Image via Khaosod.

South Africa is reeling after a five-storey building located in the heart of Johannesburg, in the northern part of the country, was engulfed in a blaze of flames last night. The devastating blaze claimed at least 52 lives, including toddlers aged between one and two years old. A further 43 people were injured.

Local fire services raced to control the raging fire and have since successfully extinguished it. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

The fire services are actively searching for more potential victims who are estimated to still be trapped inside the building, while recovery efforts continue. “We are examining each level for the retrieval of bodies,” stated Robert Mulaudzi, spokesperson for the emergency management services, adding that the death toll may rise. Local media reported that the building is in a derelict area, which was once a business district in South Africa’s economic hub, and has been a de facto base for a group of homeless people.

In similar news, this incident follows a previous explosion in Johannesburg in July, disrupting a central part of the city located in the northern region of South Africa. The blast caused a significant rupture on a main tarmac road, and several vehicles, including a mini-bus, were hurled by the blast’s force. A reported 41 people were injured due to the incident, reported KhaoSod.

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Emergency services initially suggested that the cause of the blast came from an exploding underground gas pipe. However, Egoli Gas Company argued against this claim. They pointed out that there were no signs of a pressure drop in their network, indicating their gas pipelines were undamaged and gas supply remained uninterrupted in the area. To read the full news story, click here.

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Nattapong Westwood

Nattapong Westwood is a Bangkok-born writer who is half Thai and half Aussie. He studied in an international school in Bangkok and then pursued journalism studies in Melbourne. Nattapong began his career as a freelance writer before joining Thaiger. His passion for news writing fuels his dedication to the craft, as he consistently strives to deliver engaging content to his audience.

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