KZN emergency teams retrieve mother and son’s body from collapsed structure in 6-hour long rescue effort
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DURBAN – RESCUE teams have retrieved the bodies of a mother and son who died after their home caved in on Thursday night.
“Both the bodies of the deceased have been recovered, following an extensive rescue operation,” said Emer-G-Med spokesperson, Kyle van Reenen.
He said a multidisciplinary operation saw members of the South African Police Services Search and Rescue Unit, K9 Search and Rescue Unit together with Emer-G-Med Search and Rescue, eThekwini Fire and Rescue Services, working with the Ethekwini Municipal Roads department and structural engineers throughout the day.
"A delicate operation was performed to remove the concrete and debris which had fallen and to secure the scene to enable rescue workers to be able to retrieve the bodies safely and provide much needed closure to the family," van Reenen said.
Reaction Unit SA spokesperson, Prem Balram, said the 59-year-old woman and her 16-year-old son were crushed when the retaining wall fell onto the roof of the home.
“The youngster was crushed in his bed and his mother could be heard cyring. She then went quiet and presumably died. The woman’s older son managed to escape without injury,” Balram said.
He said rescuers were unable to enter the building on Thursday, due to bad lighting and the risk of further structural collapse.
Emergency services and Disaster Management teams had to wait for specialised equipment to arrive before they were able to retrieve the bodies.