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03 August 2011

Cause of Cape Town shack fire unclear

Cape Town Disaster Risk Management on Tuesday said the cause of the fire that razed more than 60 shacks at the Vygieskraal informal settlement in Athlone on Monday is not yet known.

More than 200 people were left destitute.

Disaster risk management spokesperson Wilfred Solomons-Johannes said no one was injured.

“The city offered emergency shelter, however the victims wished to remain on scene to protect their personal belongings...” he said.

Meanwhile, the burns unit at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital described this winter as one of the worst yet.

Officials said they have been treating many more patients compared to last year.

The hospital's Sharon Cox said doctors have been extremely busy.

“We’ve got authority now to bring in the extra staff and do extra operative lists in theatre," she said. We can tell by the amount of operations that we've been doing three or four extra lists in a week to cope with the numbers of patients that have been coming through."