Boy, 12, dies in New Woodlands fire

Joshua Davids standing in the front room on Tuesday January 16, where the fire started on Monday morning at 2am.

This would have been Ezra Davids’ final year at primary school, instead his family are preparing for his funeral after the 12-year-old died in a fire at their New Woodlands home that also left his mother and brother with burn wounds and his father and brother in a coma.

Eleven people were sleeping inside of the house when the fire started at 2am on Monday morning, January 15.

Adrian Davids, 39 and his son Ezra, 12, were sleeping on a mattress in the front room, while his wife Yolanda Davids, 37, and their sons Carlo Davids, 9, and Zachary Davids, 5, were in the back rooms.

Mr Davids’ niece, Lacreesha Davids, 24, said they don’t know the cause of the fire.

Her mother-in-law, Patricia Davids, who was in the separate entrance at the back of their house, said she heard screams going back and forth.

“Yolanda woke up, ran through the fire and collected the children to save them and get them outside the house. By the time Adrian and Ezra woke up they were already on fire. Adrian tried to open the door to get out but the uncle, Ashley Davids, kicked the door open to help them get out,” she said.

Adrian and Ezra rolled on the floor to stop themselves from continued burning, she said.

“Only the five of them were affected but the rest of the family escaped through the room windows as the fire had already spread,” she said.

“The neighbours came with the hose. There were still flames but it wasn’t that severe as the community stepped in to help. Later the fire brigade arrived and they were all rushed to hospital,” she said.

Jermaine Carelse, Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson, said the cause of the fire remains unknown.

“The Fire and Rescue Service received the emergency call at approximately 2.50am. Two boy minors were treated and taken to hospital for smoke inhalation and burn wounds. The woman suffered third degree burn wounds on her back, arms and head and was treated and transported to a medical facility. The boys sustained severe burn wounds which included third degree burns,” he said.

Ezra succumbed to his injuries just before 6pm on Monday January 15.

Ms Davids sustained burn injuries to her back, arms and face, Carlo suffered smoke inhalation and minor burns to his forehead, ear and is recovering. Mr Davids and Zachary are still in a coma, said Lacreesha.

The boys are at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Mr Davids is at Tygerberg Hospital and Ms Davids is at Groote Schuur Hospital receiving treatment, she said.

When the Plainsman arrived at the home of the Davids’ family on Tuesday January 16, their house was covered in black smoke residue. The fire destroyed everything inside their home, she said.

“We’re still awaiting the results of Adrian from the hospital,” she said.

“We feel traumatised and broken. We have no words to describe it especially for the children as they are still very young. It’s really sad how this had to happen just before school started,” she said.

Their sons were excited for school this year, she said.

Videos and fake news have been doing the rounds on the family on social media, she said.

“We would like people not to spread false rumours and ask that our family be given some time and space to get things sorted and get through this. For now people shouldn’t post anything unless it comes from the immediate family. We are still trusting God for full recovery and will give updates when we’re ready,” she said.

“As a family we’re grateful for any donations. Whether food, clothing, from the little to the great we appreciate anything. We would like the community to keep us as a family in prayer, during this time,” she said.

For more information or to make donations, contact Lacreesha on 061 110 8642 or Zaheerah Moosa on 063 253 2466.