Hiker shocked to find a dead body at the bottom of Howick Falls

2014-12-31 00:00

A HIKER visiting Howick Falls for the first time was shocked by the gruesome discovery of a dead body on the rocks at the bottom of the falls yesterday.

Pietermaritzburg local Wesley ­Croucamp was walking along a nature trail near the bottom of the falls with his family, when he decided to get a ­closer look at the falls itself.

“It was my first time ever seeing the falls, so I wanted to get as close as I could,” he said.

Croucamp left his family and friends at the picnic spot a few metres away, and climbed around the slippery rocks to get to the falls.

“All of a sudden, I looked down and saw this body. I almost stood on it. It was tucked into a corner, so I didn’t see it until I was right above it.

“The body was so broken and ­bloated, I could not even tell the race or gender of the dead person,” he said.

He called out to his family to phone the ­police right away and minutes later, ­paramedics, members of the Howick Police and K9 Search and Rescue Unit arrived on the scene.

With locals and tourists lining the yellow tape cordoning off the area, members of the K9 Search and Rescue Unit prepared for the recovery of the body. Dressed in wet suits, Sergeant ­Nolan Wallace and Sergeant Fred Brand carefully made their way down the edge of the falls viewpoint.

Ropes around their waists were attached on the other end to police vans.

The Search and Rescue Unit said they would only be able to give information about the gender and race of the body once it had been retrieved and ­examined.

Meanwhile, earlier yesterday ­afternoon the actions of a four-year-old boy reportedly saved the life of his older brother who was struggling to stay afloat in a river near his home in ­Edendale.

ER24 paramedics said the seven-year-old boy, whose identity was not released yesterday, was found thrashing in the water by his younger brother who immediately called his family to help.

Family members rushed to the river’s edge and pulled the struggling boy to safety.

ER24 arrived on scene and treated the boy who was then taken to hospital where he was reported to be in a stable condition.

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