Harare is burning


A car sale along Robert Mugabe street has been gutted by fire today. Several cars were burnt. The fire brigade has arrived but without water. The cause of the fire is said to have been a burning tyre.

Our reporter Moses Matenga says more than five vehicles went up in smoke. There was chaos as people tried to drive some of the vehicles to safety while hundreds of people stampeded to catch a glimpse of the huge fire breakout.

About two haulage trucks were burnt to ashes while a bus also caught fire. Part of the building collapsed.

Below is a collage of pictures compiled by John Mokwetsi.

People watch a cloud of smoke
People watch a cloud of smoke

Fire in Harare (2)fire3fire4





Readers comments:

“Fire brigade does not carry water around but depends on water valves that are strategically paced around the city. When they get to a site they quickly look for the valves so as to connect the hose and draw water from there. The problem is these valves are either vandalised or have no water due to the frequent water cuts (but more often its vandalism).”

“A fire brigade arriving on the scene without water? Why bother? They should have parked the big truck, saved on the diesel and took kombis to the scene instead.What were they hoping to achieve by arriving without water? A similar thing happened in Mt Pleasant Harare this year. They had to get water from the neighbours.”

“Whose car sales was it? Why did it burn? Sure we know how, becoz a tyre was burning somewhere close, but who lit that tyre? Was this car sales properly licensed by the council? Kana vasina vachadya izvozvo!”

Do you have a coronavirus story? You can email us on: news@alphamedia.co.zw


  1. arghhhhhhhhhhh,wat a big loss

    1. It was a disaster waiting to happen. Not surprising since Magaba is encroaching into the CBD. In fact even in the first street mall it’s all vendors, unlit alleys and urine-filled sanitary lanes. Thanks to 33yrs of disaster which will end come August 2013

      1. george bachinche

        What 33 years? Are you saying people born or came to Harare within the 33 years since independence are the soruce of problems in Harare?

        1. Bhachi Tsveee

          Haa tibvire apo Bachinche, nxaa.33years !!!

        2. Ana Goroge, tinokuzivai kuti ndimi ZANU through and through. Why can’t you admit that we are way worse off than we were in 1980 when service delivery was excellent? When we get worse and worse each year, that’s not development where I come from. Matuzvi everywhere muna 1st street, the cracked pavements, no power, no water, no everything. And all you do is defend dinosaurs and fossilized deadwood simply because of your hatred of Morgan?

  2. No water in a fire engine? Inga nyika yafa takatarisa chokwadi!!

  3. Oooh shame

  4. Anoziva Mwari


  5. I can count a litany of badly written words, grammar, spellings, etc

    1. iwe this is breaking news, they had to break it before someone else broke the news, so ataipa faster faster

    2. Fokoro iwe mhani. If you want gramma go to the university or migrate to England. Its our second language, as long as everyone hear what is being said

      Mabhoyi futi, kuda kubatira chirungu padenga

    3. u r suffering from colonial hungover ! zvine mhosva yei kuvhuna chingezi

    4. Pfutseki iwe Bla Shanga uribenzi, grammar spellings hazvina basa chero tanzwa zvirikutaurwa nemunhu. Ukawana nguva ukwane benzi iwe.

    5. Why then don’t you take a teaching job Mr Know it all?
      I understood everything these guys said. At least they want everyone to understand rather than speak in their own native language.
      Learn to appreciate . English is may be our third language and to some even a 7th language hence the incorrect spellings etc..
      Sometimes it shows how foolish , proud, small minded and big headed some people are. The subject was about fire and you are here trying to teach us grammar and spellings. Go teach your children who are not excelling at school.

  6. fire brigade yasvika isina mvura?not surprised though

  7. Juliana Sibanda

    Why did the fire brigade bothered going there ivo vasina mvura. Kutinyaudza muroad mahara

    1. i love being a fireman in a country with dump people like the reporter

      when you are not well informed stop report about the fire brigade. go to 111 belvedere road and get enough information about how they operate. for your own information no fire engine can be dispatched with an empty tank. no amount of water contained in the fire tenders can sustain a continously burning fire. gather your facts first before going to print mr editor or whatever you’re called.

  8. The Fire Brigade arrived without water! Zvechivanhu akomana, zvino inogonzi Fire Brigade sei iyo isina mvura yekudzimura moto wacho? Ndo Independence yacho here iyoyi?

    1. Bvunzawo hako iwe

  9. It was Five brigade who came here first hahaha!

  10. 33yrs in power.pamberi navamugabe nefire brgade yavo isina mvura

    1. taurai mabhunu

      Are you forgetting it’s an MDC-T run council, for the past 4+ years??

      1. It’s the legacy of ZANU PF that rubber into opposition but it will soon end. As soon as Save wins then we will have constructive criticism.

  11. ahahahahaahhahahahaha fire grenade

    1. Lol nice 1 bro

  12. those breathing the oxygen will need to see the DOC

  13. ma1 vakomana.

  14. Wanhu tange tofa nama stressi e zete bée cee. Thank you ncube for going ahead of your timé in cyberspace though bigi brather will obviously jam and rig your space soon.

  15. Ndashaya kuti hutsi hweyi kaini huri so thick.inga mahwani

  16. whose car sales was it? Why did it burn? Sure we know how, becoz a tyre was burning somewhere close, but who lit that tyre? Was this carsales properly licensed by the council? Kana vasina vachadya izvozvo!

  17. shit hapens stop blaming one another guys zvatoitika

  18. A fire brigade arriving on the scene without water? Why bother? They should have parked the big truck, saved on the diesel and took kombis to the scene instead.What were they hoping to achieve by arriving without water? A similar thing happened in Mt Pleasant Harare this year. They had to get water from the neighbours.

    1. Fire brigade does not carry water around but depends on water valves that are strategically paced around the city. When they get to a site they quickly look for the valves so as to connect the hose and draw water from there. The problem is these valves are either vandalised or have no water due to the frequent water cuts (but more often its vandalism).”

    2. whoever answered above me ,is an idiot. What happens is this. In our town of 2 million (harare) people there are 4 main fire stations and one satellite station. They each have 2 trucks. One carries water (tanker), one does not. At each REAL fire call (not someone having a heart attack, which they respond to as well), they dispatch TWO TRUCK FROM THE NEAREST STATIONS. Based on the address, they know exactly how far the nearest hydrant is and if the hoses can reach it AND fight the fire from that distance, that is how they decide which trucks to dispatch. So I guess the guy above me must live in a REALLY BIG CITY where there are hydrants on every half block, but that ain’t the way it is the the rural midwest. once, again,And the guy Munya knows what he is talking about .The problem is these valves are either vandalised or have no water due to the frequent water cuts (but more often its vandalism).”

  19. fire brigade yauya isina mvura saka yaingei ? shame on you


    El agua es escasa, no a los bomberos.

  21. harare city is e problem many unlicenced operaters all over

  22. So what were they fire brigade doing going there in the first place with no water? For moral support?

  23. There are water valves everywhere in the city, but we have vandalised all, so who’s to blame? I don’t think I would blame Harare City Council.



  25. changu doa (AWARD WINNER)

    I am telling you it was one of thé street women coming and going to their provincial hq around here! I saw it.she was donning their usual street regalia but looked angry about something. Hahaha


  26. Fire brigade does not carry water around but depends on water valves that are strategically paced around the city. When they get to a site they quickly look for the valves so as to connect the hose and draw water from there. The problem is these valves are either vandalised or have no water due to the frequent water cuts (but more often its vandalism).

    1. Tendai Chaminuka

      There are supposed to carry a certain amount then rely on the water valves.This was said by the fire department when such a well known incident occurred but they lamented the leaking of the fire engines as the cause why they are no longer carrying water.Surprisingly,the same council is buying expensive towing vehicles dzekumhanyisana nemakombie.No priorities.Mwari ngaatibatsire nokutipa vatungamiriri vanenjere dzakaita sedzaSolomon

  27. ndepapi pacho pazvaitika

  28. Tsombori Mbiri

    Newsday, good stuff, makuisa magetsi to good use, dropping the news as it happens

  29. kurai Machirori

    Pamwe vaifunga kuti mafire hydrants ariko, they would simply connect and get dirty nebasa, Pidigu dhii zvangu nekuseka (is it their new work code….they have been doing this waterless thing for a while now) Mota vakapiwa nemurungu uye wekwaMujuru.


    @ Varonee, well said.

  31. Tendai Chaminuka

    What a headline

  32. @Varonee, you have put it right…but, this raises the question of maintenance also. Looks like nobody cares what’s working and where till disaster strikes! Sad to note.

  33. Ko madii musina kuuya kana muchiuya musina mvura, whoz the director of this dprtmnt.

  34. sabotage chaiyo! maAmericans akanda grenade mistaking roadport for osama’s compound!

  35. haisi moto yose inodzimurwa nemvura hama dzadiwa


    Its like as if iam perusing one of UK papers. Well done News Day.

  37. Dai kwatsva iyo State House…

    1. Lol iih amana

  38. Zvimafire brigade zvakadhaqa

  39. president mupazhi elect

    oooh dhemeti. let me run to my colleague vice president in zanu pf to ask if they can lend me money to campaign againest them about this moto! sheedzayi zbc.

  40. zim yaora baba hoye zim yaora babaaaaaaa

    1. yaora feya

  41. amana what a loss hw can they rush without water hey and those cars are not even insured

  42. Maybe vanga vachida kufuridza moto wacho. Like seriously. WTF were they going with no water or anything to put out the fire??

  43. Aiwawo ako ke grammar kanenge kepatwitter!

    We shld have the kinds of fire brigade trucks that have a water reservoir.New council to come must purchase these honestly.

  44. guys ndasvika panzvimbo moto uripakati pekupisa fire brigade was there doing mahumbwe. those guys they are not prepared to save life. havazivi vanga vachingobata bata. you munhu chaiye akatsva fire brigade iripo havatogoni kumudzima.

  45. mapedza kupisa dzimba muma ruzevha mavakuuya mutown izanu pf ndomabasa ayo chete

  46. george bachinche

    Ignorant Mabhoyi. Water is not the element for fighting fire. It dependent what source fire it is. Hakusi kumaruzevha kwanoti mvura chete.

  47. concerned firefighter

    hamawee nguva yareba muchingotitukirira chokwadi chiripo ndechekuti ma fire engine amunoona ese aya achimhanya mutown anenge anemvura always +/-2000ltrs . pamunoona tichimhanya tichitsvaga mvura paye tinenge tichiitira backup depending ne size of the situation at hand hatimiriri kuzomhanya motor yaa empty . dambudziko ma journerlists edu muZim not isu vanonyora nyaya dzavo basing on hearsay from bystanders instead of asking the premises owner & isu vacho vadzimuri vemoto . pakupedzisira hama isu hatichambozvigaye coz tatoa jairira mareporters acho. only those who hve been affected appreciate our services & knws that we are ther to save. ndatenda hangu

  48. Arr… comrades the fire waszi caused bi the illegal sanctions.

  49. MDC mayor lol

  50. concerned firefighter

    its true that things are not well in Harare ie service delivery.
    but we at Fire brigade we are trying our best for sure. to hell with these poor journalists . vanoda kutengesa nyaya dzavo nekunyepa shame on u reporter. usanyepera vanhu . kana usingazive unobvunza . uya ku FIRE BRIGADE tikuudze hw we operate . thank you

  51. pipo pipo pipo

    the fire was putting out the brigade. thats the reason why water was not necessary.

  52. Typical African country. It happened to my cousin’s store in the capital city of Zambia, Lusaka when the fire engines that arrived at the scene it had no water. Even the fire hydrants could not be accessed. 33 years or 70 years of black rule makes no difference the rot continues unabated.

  53. shame for the car sale, however the reporter could havce done more work by telling us where exatcly the car sale is kwete kungoti Robert Mugabe.

    Lets hope the car sale has insurance for the cars so that at least they get re-imbursed.

  54. Its vry unfortunat tht evrytym thre z fire of ths magnitude reporters without adequate information about hw th fire brigade weks take th advantage to polute readers wth biased news. Tht same reporter dosnt know th emergency number, wher z th Hre fire brigade nd hw t weks bt ononzwa nemunhu asingazivewo omanya kunyora nyaya yake. Our fire engines cary an average of 2000 ltrs of water nd we look for street hydrants depending on th size of fire. Endai pa Harare Central Fire mohwa mega kuti vanoshanda sei so tht u wl be in a positon to know tht ths reporter z lying. Ndatenda hangu.

    1. Qawe laMaqawe

      Munya & Firefighter all you saying about looking for fire hydrant valves is understood but they have (fire brigade) and the two of you have admitted that these are vandalised most of the time so why not carry the 2000ltrs for starters so that when you get there while others are confirming the vandalism others could be trying to stop the fire with the 200 ltrs, mind you at times hakuna magetsi to pump water so the hydrants can have pressure. This is proper mismanagement that does not need us to know how the firefighting is done, incidentally the same fire brigade went to Beatrice to fight the fire that consumed Gen Rex Mujuru without water, did they expect to find fire hydrants there as well? The reporter is giving news as is and has even taken time to find out the problem and it has been confirmed kuti vandalism. They say once beaten twice shy for it is a common secrete that because of the mismanagement of the country we had people were pulling anything they could lay their hands on for resale to put bread on their family tables so valves were no exception. The truth is vanhu veZinwa were taking these and reselling them that is why:

      Hailume gore rino Zanu!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  55. Visit local online casino http://www.lagertooth.com and win big.Share the good news!

  56. Qawe laMaqawe

    They know very well that the valves installed around the city have either been vandalise or stolen but still they come without water, what a Zanu way of doing things. In a proper functional country they would have come with water just in case but thanks to the brilliant Zanu manifestos of the last 33years vanoda kudusva first before they get water such a shame becuase:

    Hailume gore rino Zanu!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  57. Illy Gall Reggy M'Chenj

    What exactly is ‘a car sale’?

  58. MDC is in charge of Harare and quite a lot is still not ok.

    1. shamwari MDC starting running the city less than five ago.it took thirty years for the city to be were its now.do expect miracles from MDC.

  59. i’vnt seen any inicident wer our hre fire brigade tk their duty prply, thy are alwys at the scene late ol wtht water, lets get rid ‘f them.

  60. mdc s in charg ‘f hre bt it took over frm wer zanu pf’s walter mzembi left wen h was at zinwa.

    1. YES boss it took Zanu thirty years to bring down the city and we want MDC to do miracles??

  61. Handiti imi manga muchiwokera? Saka ve Fire Brigade vauyawo kuzowokera

  62. The damage is already done saka don’t don’t blame any one.ndofarira kuwona vanhu vachipfidza ndozvondi nakidza ende hapana anondirambidza

  63. What a tragedy loss we can no longer trust fire fighters in case of emergency

  64. I feel sorry to anyone who suffers any loss pertaining to this incident

  65. How come they didn’t use the +/-2000l they r supposed to carry around. This tyre burning nonsense shld stop. Council sona sona nemavendor vachisiya a burning tyre.

  66. Masanctions chete. The west left that burning tyre muroad and that reporter is being sponsored by the west. The west is a shame, kuempter mvura mumaengines edu!

  67. Kkkkkkkkkkkkkk zvichanaka guys makata avekupera

  68. Come on firefighters; what we need to see is action and results on the ground, not this yarra yarra blah blah about coming to your offices to see how you operate. It’s an undisputed fact that nobody saw you spraying water at the scene, implying that manga musina mvura yacho FULL STOP. You carry out your mock fire drills in your offices, but when the real situation arises you are found wanting, then you blame reporters for criticising you. Bvumai kuti makanya basa, kwete kuinviter reporter kumaoffice kwenyu, anouya kuzoitei, ndookwabvira moto here? Saka maWarriors akadyiwa 3-0 neEgypt ZIFA must invite us kuZIFA House kuzoona how they play football handiti? Wake up mhani, nxaa!

  69. Bloodlust Chipangano car sales went up in smoke thanks to Chombos…

  70. Ko MOTO wakatanga sei , chokwadi tyre ringa pfuta kusvika pakubatidza a car selling garage vanhu vakangoyeva kunge varikuona firimu. pedzezvo motaura zvamusingazive mazimba kurai mhani

  71. Fire brigade haifambiri mahara iri kutoda mari yayooo hahahahha

  72. Cephas Marikisi

    Fire department ngaitaurire vanhu chokwadi kuti vanga vasina the right type of fire suppressing agent kuti vadzime this type of fire. I’m a dangerous goods, explosives & fuel tanker driver and what i know from my explosives & fire training courses i do out of the country is that, this type of fire haidzimwi nemvura, panoto shandiswa AFFF (Aqueous Film Forming Foam) – its a fire suppressing fluid which coats the fire & prevents it from getting in contact with oxygen. I-liquid ine mafuru & inoshandiswa parikutsva zvinhu zvine moto une petrol or diesel mukati. These fire brigade guys should tell the general public chokwadi chekuti they didnt have the right type of fire suppressing agent. Why then didn’t they use the -+2000lts yemvura yavanoti vanogara nayo??? Simple answer – they knew exactly kuti vakadira mvura zvaitoita worse since paitsva mota dzine petrol & diesel mukati. And to the garage owner…. shamwari kana mota dzako dzakatombo dirwa that -+2000lts of water go & sue the fire department coz ndivo vakato wedzera moto nemazi mvura avo iwaya.

  73. Tsaona inongoitika pasina akaigadzirira hama dzangu,zve 33 years izvo handioni pazvavekubvawo uye kuti zvinei nemoto uyu,dont be careless and say 33 years.mangwana uchatadza kushandira mhuri yako wongoti 33 years,no no no no akomana ngatiratidzei kuti takafunda mhani.nxaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

  74. Asi vanhu vakaoma shuwa, they place themselves in harm’s way neyaya yekusada kusarira. Vanhu kuungana kudaro panzvimbo irikubvira… Ko dai pakaputika? Zvakaoma

  75. Had it not been for the sanctions invited by MDC, there could have been water to extinguish the fire. See what MDC has caused and still causing through its hurting sanctions. Before the formation of MDC, Zimbabwe was not lacking anything

    1. I am not sure if your post was supposed to be satirical but you are telling a blatant lie by saying that before MDC, Zimbabwe never lacked anything. MDC was formed as a result of the country lacking a visionary leader. Was MDC in existence when we pursued ESAP? Was MDC responsible for paying non-budgeted $50K to so-called war veterans? Was the MDC responsible for going to the DRC? Was the MDC responsible for a chaotic land-reform program that was undertaken for political expediency rather than the common good of the nation? Anyway, the story at hand is about the fire. Why could the fire not be contained before becoming such a big blaze?
      To the brothers/sisters from the Fire Department, it is noble and human to admit when you are failing. It may not be of your own doing because we know that there is virtually nothing that is working well within the country but please do not take us for fools. Kana matadza basa, an admission and an apology goes a long way in re-establishing trust and respect. This is not the first fire that you have shown your incapacity to competently deal with fires. I am an MDC supporter/fan but I must also say that they have done little to give a good image of themselves in the city. I do acknowledge the interference from Chombo but I still feel that they could have at least tried to do the basics well. Having said all this, my slogan still continues as Vote MDC!!!

  76. Magetsi anga ayenda saka vaka batidza moto wemotokari. Its not kuti mota dzaitsva as such. Kungoti Fire Brigade ine dzungu, vakamhanya nekuti pamwe moto wanga wanyanya kukwichidzirwa. Ma1!!!!!!!

  77. Mangwende we Zimbabwe

    Gentlemen and ladies, let us not turn everything into politics just because we want to argue in that direction. This has revealed an area of concern to everyone no matter what political affiliation. I suggest we step up our disaster preparedness as we have learnt the hard way.

  78. In short there is no fire brigade. Coming without water, knowing very well that Harare taps are always dry zvinobatsirei. Why don’t you keep the tanks always full? Ko mukawana moto watangira pane water valve yenyu munoita seiko? Shame.

  79. I am the Vice President please show some respect. It was a result of sanctions so blame the Far East!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  80. Kutaura Chokwadi


  81. zanu-pf vs mdc warzone(no rules)

    petrol haidzimwe nemvura hama dzadiwa,

  82. Hama dzinodiwa ndanga ndichinyatso verenga ma comments enyu amwe acho haana kushata. Ini I am not into politics. Saka rega ndinyatso kutsanangura nerurimi rwaamai, ndakanyora nechirungu mungazondimaka grammar futi. Ndirikuda kutanga neve Fire Brigade, ndapota hangu musanyepere vanhu. Ndakaitawo ma course ekudzimura moto aya kakawanda kumabasa kwandakashanda ne kwandiri kushanda. Pane ma ndudzi emoto akasiyana siyana uyezve achidzimurwa nenzira dzakasiyana siyana. Kana Fire Brigade yakatoenda nemvura zvange zvisina kushata, asi kana makatoshandisa mvura pamoto une petrol or diesel, kana magetsi, makatadza basa ipapo zvechokwadi. Ndimi makatowedzera flame yemoto instead yekuti mudzime maitowedzera. Saka chingobvumayi henyu kuti makaenda musina mvura, because munosungiswa nemuridzi we Garage. Akuruma nzewe ndewako. In short makatadza basa.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *