Girl survives family drowning accident by clinging to branch

2011-12-28 07:28

A 12-year-old girl clung to a branch of a tree for an hour after the car in which she was a passenger was washed into a dam during a rain storm north of Johannesburg this week.

The Star newspaper reported in today’s issue that when help arrived, Tshegofatso Dithung tried to fight off a security guard so that she could climb back into the swollen dam to search for her father and grandmother, who were still inside the car.

Both adults drowned but the girl survived.

While stuck in the car with a central locking system that prevented them from getting out, Tshegofatso’s father had advised her to stay inside, believing it would be safer, her mother, Fundi Ndaba, told the newspaper.

But Tshegofatso realised the car was filling up with water, so she opened the window and climbed out.

She held on to the top of the car, until she found a log to hold on to, the report read.

She had recently taught herself how to swim, her mother said.

The three occupants of the car had been returning from a Christmas visit weekend visit at the Blue Valley Golf Estate in Midrand when the incident happened on Monday night.

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