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Soweto Floods: Emergency workers receive frantic call from female passenger stuck on bus

Durban – Emergency workers rescued passengers from a bus that was stuck in torrential rain in Orlando, Soweto, on Friday morning.

According to Kyle van Reenan, Emer-G-Med’s Emergency Operations Centre received a frantic call from a female passenger on a bus who explained that the vehicle was rapidly filling up with water.

According to the City of Johannesburg, severe road infrastructure damage, had been reported across Joburg with Roodepoort and Soweto being severely impacted by extreme weather conditions.

Van Reenan said: “Stuck in the heavy downpour in an unknown area with water levels rising, the bus was beginning to rapidly take on water and understandably the caller was in distress and could not accurately explain her location or a landmark.”

“The Emergency Dispatcher requested the caller to send a GPS location over WhatsApp messenger, whilst the Emer-G-Med Emergency Operations Centre, together with First Assist, sprung into action.

“Once the EOC received the location, multiple rescue units from the city of Johannesburg, the South African Police Services and Emergency Medical Services, as well as the First Assist Commercial Heavy Duty Towing division mobilized to the location.

“During this time, the dispatcher remained in contact with the passenger, and managed to calm and reassure her that help was indeed on the way.

“Rescue services conducted a delicate and skilled rescue operation, resulting in the safe retrieval of all passengers on-board a sixty-seater passenger bus. We commend and thank all agencies involved in the rescue,” said van Reenan.

In another incident three people were rescued from a flooded home in Kliptown.

According to Gauteng EMS spokesperson Xoli Khumalo, an old woman and two men were rescued.

Three people were rescued from a house in Kliptown. Picture: Supplied

He said all were safe.

The City also provided a list of places that people should avoid.

These include Wilgerood Road in Roodepoort and Naledi Bridge in Soweto.

Joburg City Power said it had received over 2 000 complaints of power outages due to the fierce hail storm on Monday afternoon.