Two hurt in Airlink crash discharged

2009-10-13 00:00

TWO of the people injured in the SA Airlink plane crash in Merebank are well on the road to recovery and have been discharged from a Durban hospital.

Four people were seriously injured when the Jetstream 41 crashed into the concrete palisade fence of a Merebank high school. The pilot, Allister Freeman, died of his injuries last week.

Yesterday, flight attendant Rudelle Oosthuysen and street cleaner Abraham Mthethwa were discharged from St Augustine’s Hospital where they underwent major surgery after the September 24 incident.

Mthethwa was cleaning the verge outside the school when the plane crashed into him, pinning him against the concrete palisade fence.

Oosthuysen had surgery to repair fractured cheek bones two weeks ago. She took her first steps last Sunday.

The plane’s co-pilot, Sonja Bierman, has been transferred to a Johannesburg hospital.

St Augustine’s general manager Augusta Dorning said Oosthuysen and Mthethwa are well enough to return to their homes.

When contacted by The Witness, Maggie Wernich, Oosthuysen’s mother, said her daughter is well, but does not want to speak to the media.

Ethekwini Deputy Mayor Logie Naidoo visited Mthethwa on Saturday. “He was in good spirits and happy that he was going home. He was battling to use the crutches, but said he would be okay,” he said.

Naidoo said he has spoken to Mthethwa’s managers about his injured on duty compensation.

“I assured him that his job would be safe and that he must concentrate on getting well …” he said.

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