An ‘enquiry docket’ has been opened to investigate the cause of a fire that broke out at the Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality traffic department in the early hours of this morning, bringing numerous essential services to a halt.
Police spokesperson, captain Namhla Mdleleni said: “Saps members opened an enquiry after Enoch Mgijima Municipality traffic department offices were on fire during the early of today at about 4am. According to information from members who were on duty last night, they smelt smoke coming out of the offices and upon checking, they saw fire coming out of the counters.”
In a post on its Facebook page today, the municipality announced that the traffic department building would be temporarily closed as a result of the blaze.
The following services would thus not be rendered: driving and learner’s tests; bookings for driving and learner’s licences; roadworthy tests; customer call centre (control room) – customers may temporarily use 045-8076000; renewal of vehicle licences – customers may use other municipal offices in Tarkastad, Whittlesea and Molteno.
The post further stated that today’s driving and learner’s tests would be postponed and applicants would be contacted and given new dates. The municipality said it would work around the clock to ensure the office was quickly reopened.
No one sustained injuries in the incident. The response from the fire services department swift, the post stated. “The cause of the fire is not known yet but an assessment will be carried out today. We can confirm that there is no sign of forced entry and that security guards were on site.”
Late last month, the municipality suffered massive losses after the municipal public accounts committee (MPAC) and integrated planning and economic development (IPED) offices at the Gardens Clinic caught fire.
Municipal spokesperson, Lonwabo Kowa, at the time said the building incurred massive damage estimated at R300 000 in costs stating that the cause of the fire was still unknown and that investigations were ongoing. “There has been massive damage as some crucial files and assets have been burnt.” It was the second time the building had been on fire. “No one has been apprehended but both investigations are still on. One office in the same building caught fire on July 5,” Kowa said.