Pensioners hurt by falling branch

2011-12-03 00:00

A HUGE tree branch crashed down on a queue of pension ers at a paypoint a the Poyinandi hall in Edendale yesterday morning, pinning several pensioners who could not hobble out of the way fast enough under its branches.

Two pensioners were taken to Edendale Hospital with light injuries. Ntombi Zuma (85) narrowly escaped with minor injuries on her legs after being trapped. “I thank God that I am alive after this.

“I was just standing under the tree … and I heard a sound like a shot. The next thing I was under the tree.”

Another woman, Khonzeni Mtolo, also had to be rescued from under the fallen branches and sustained minor injuries.

Paramedics and police worked with the public to lift the heavy branches from the two women, and municipal parks department workers used chainsaws and a truck to clear up the mess.

One of the helpers, Siya Mthalane, who helped to remove branches from the women, said he doesn’t know what caused the tree to break.

“There was no wind that was blowing, but the problem maybe is that the tree was too old,” said Mthalane.

Wheelchair-bound Dudu Nguba said she was across the road when she heard a loud crackling sound as the branch fell. “I saw people running towards me and they were crying out loud, saying ‘What’s happening!’.

“There were people crying under the branches.”

• mlondi.radebe@witness.co.za

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