Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube.

Johannesburg - KwaZulu-Natal co-operative affairs MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube expressed shock over the three people who died on Saturday after being hit by lightning near Vryheid.

“We are deeply disturbed to learn of this incident,” the MEC's spokesman Lennox Mabaso said in a statement,

“For us as government as well as for all those who have fallen victim to this catastrophe this is no way to start a new year.”

Two women, aged between 70 and 80, and a man, believed to be in his sixties, were confirmed dead at the scene, said Emergency Medical Services spokesman Robert McKenzie.

They were believed to have been in a house at the time.

Three other women sustained serious injuries when they were struck by the lightning.

“Paramedics stabilised them on the scene before transporting them to the local eDumbe Community Health Centre,” said McKenzie.

Mabaso said disaster management teams would be scattered around the province in cases of natural disasters.

Sapa