Protesters attack firefighters while trying to quench flames in Cape Town

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Firefighters deployed to save people and property from flames in Cape Town have been attacked three times in 48 hours, as protests becomes increasingly violent in some areas of the city this week.

The attackers have been labelled “cowards” for ambushing an essential emergency service. The protests over land hit many areas around the N2 over the past few days.

On Thursday, the City of Cape Town’s Mayco member for safety and security, JP Smith, said: “After a stoning incident in Khayelitsha on Tuesday, a petrol bomb was hurled at a fire truck in Mfuleni just hours later.

“The fire engine was en route to a call when they were attacked at the Bosasa TRA just after 19:30.

“The attackers threw stones at the vehicle, but also a petrol bomb. Staff saw flames on the right side of the crew cab, but they didn’t stop and drove to the Blue Downs police station instead.

“Fortunately, the vehicle didn’t catch alight, and no one was injured,” Smith said.

But the attacks did not end there.

Smith explained: “Fast-forward 24 hours and the same happened to another fire vehicle in Mfuleni while under police escort. The roof lining caught alight, but staff were able to extinguish the flames in time.”

Similar attacks on other essential agencies have been carried out hereby restricting essential service delivery to vulnerable communities.

Smith appeals to the public to report any information they may have about those responsible for the violence to the Public Emergency Communication Centre by dialling 021 480 7700 from a cellphone or 107 from a landline.

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