Robbers lured two City of Cape Town firefighters into a trap with a hoax fire call on Saturday morning.
The firefighters were attacked and robbed at gunpoint in Wallacedene, Cape Town, as they made their way to help the supposed people in distress.
The City said these incidents are becoming commonplace and are breaking the trust that firefighters need in order to help people.
The two had to be treated in hospital.
It was while the crew from Brackenfell was making its way through the structures towards the smoke that the three attackers struck.
"It turned out that there was no structural fire as reported, which makes it appear as if this was a trap," a statement from the member of the mayoral committee for community safety said.
"These officers provide a lifesaving service and every incident of this nature chips away at the trust between the fire service and the communities they serve."
Anybody with information on the attack is asked to call the City's public emergency communications centre on 021 480 7700 from a cellphone or 107 from a landline, or to report it to the police.
Firefighters in the Western Cape are on high alert for the "fire season", which is usually exacerbated by strong winds.