Over the span of two weeks, the Gauteng Water Policing and Diving Services of the SAPS successfully recovered the bodies of 16 drowning victims. These operations took place from October 19 to November 2, covering 11 reported incidents in various locations.
The diving units, part of the Rapid Response Services (RRS), were deployed in areas like Springs, Kagiso, Boschkop, Florida, Temba, Welbekend, Roodepoort, Dobsonville quarry, Bronkhorstspruit, and Pretoria North. One of the most tragic incidents occurred on the Vaal River when a 16ft boat capsized, leading to the loss of a three-year-old child and three adults.
Furthermore, they recovered the body of a man in his 40s, who had been assaulted and had lash marks on his back in Moroka, Soweto.
As the festive season approaches, with many people planning recreational activities near rivers and dams, law enforcement encourages vigilance. Holidaymakers are urged to equip their vessels with life jackets, ensuring all passengers wear these essential flotation devices. Supervision and educating children about the dangers of playing near water are also vital.
With rainy weather expected, the public should avoid attempting to cross rivers. In the event of a suspected drowning, witnesses should identify two or more beacons to aid divers in narrowing down the search area. In emergencies, individuals are advised to call 10111, remain calm, and provide detailed information about the incident’s location and the number of victims.
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Photo: Supplied by Citizen