Ndlovu family safe after fire tragedy
21 January 2010
A visit by Trellidor management and staff to a rebuilt home in Orlando West, Soweto, was a stark reminder of how important it is to think carefully about the type of security we install on our doors and windows.
The Ndlovu family lost not only their home but also family members that were unable to get out of the house when it caught fire due to a gas heater explosion in August 2009. The doors and windows could not be used as an escape route since they were secured with rigid iron bars.
"This will never happen again to this family because we have installed sliding Trellidor security barriers to the windows and doors of the Ndlovu family's newly built home," said Trellidor Soweto franchise owner Lloyd Mogotsi.
The new barriers can be unlocked with a key from inside the house and opened to allow the family to escape in case of a future emergency. Gogo Charlotte Ndlovu (81) said that the family was very grateful for all the help they had received since the fire destroyed her home.
"I've lived here since 1957, right next door to Nelson Mandela's home in Vilikazi Street. I knew him and his family well and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela was here on the day they gave me the keys to my new house after it was built," she said.
A number of sponsors came to the rescue after the blaze, raising a total of R300 000 and building the family a new home within a matter of weeks. The house is much larger than the old one, to accommodate the family more comfortably.
Gogo Ndlovu lost her granddaughter, Phindile, in the fire as well as two great-granddaughters, Fikile and Paballo. Seven family members survived the tragedy, some of them badly burned.
Phindile's baby daughter Nthabaleng, who Phindile passed through the bars of a window that tragic night, was one of the survivors. Corporate Social Responsibility
Phindile Ndlovu was honoured by the President with a bronze award for bravery at the 2009 Awards Ceremony for National Orders after her sad death. Called ‘The Order of Mendi Decoration for Bravery' it commended Phindile for sacrificing herself to save the children in the house.