FREE STATE – The Free State Water wing had a busy week with people reported drowning at different towns in the province.
Rosendal: Two children aged 13 and 17 and two adults drowned when the driver attempted to drive through a flooded road. Four people were reported to have drowned, SAPS Water Wing managed to recover bodies of a child (17) and two males and one 13-year-old is still missing.
Oranjeville: The deceased was with his wife and family drinking liquor after which he disappeared. His wife went to look for him and saw him in the middle of the river. The wife summoned his brothers and family members to near the river, the deceased was seen waving to the family and disappeared under water. SAPS Water Wing was summoned to the scene and his body was recovered.
Botshabelo: At a river near Ikemeleng Cattle Post, police were summoned after the body of missing 34-year-old male was discovered after he was reported missing on 23 December 2021.
Senekal: De Put River. A 41-year-old drowned after he attempted to cross the over flowing river on 21 December 2021. His body was found on 25 December by the Free State Water wing divers.
Bothaville: A 21-year-old priest took his church members to the river near Kroonstad for baptism. While in the process of baptism, the priest and 41-year-old woman disappeared in the water. Their bodies were found by divers kilometres away from the drowning scene.
As the police in the Free State province we wish to urge communities staying near rivers or streams not to attempt crossing to the other side while under the influence of any substance or just tempted to take such risk. We also advice churches to try and suspend any activities involving the use of rivers and dams as the level of water has increased and the pressure of the flowing water is high during this raining season. This is to avoid having more drownings and loss of life.
Source: South African Police Service