18 in Mpumalanga reportedly drowned during December

18 in Mpumalanga reportedly drowned during December
FILE: An alarming number of people lost their lives in drowning incidents over the festive season.

The police said the number is alarming.

18 people died during last year’s festive season due to drowning, police said.

Most incidents were caused by the recent heavy rainfalls, spokesman Colonel Mtsholi Bhembe said.

He said the number of people being affected is still continuing as the rain keeps falling harder.

People died while trying to cross “raging” streams, Bhembe said.

“There is a strong possibility that the two missing bodies may have been devoured by crocodiles, since most rivers are infested with these reptiles in the province,” he said.

Just recently, two boys drowned while swimming at the Driekoppies Dam in the Nkomazi area.

• Police divers are still looking for the body of a 9-year-old boy who drowned at the Crocodile river on 31 January 2019.

• A 25-year-old man drowned at the Nkomazi river in Tjakastad, east of Badplaas. His body was found 8 days later.

“We are pleading with parents to keep an eye on their children,” police boss Lieutenant-General Mondli Zuma said this week.

“Everyone needs to exercise caution, including motorists when encountering overflowing streams,” Zuma said.

(edited by MLM)

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