Dog bites woman

2017-03-28 17:27

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What should have been a restorative day at the poolside ended in an injury for one pensioner.

Carol Abrahams (62) from Lansdowne visited the Hanover Park municipal swimming pool when she became the victim of a dog attack.

Her husband Pat says she is a swimming fanatic who visited the pool every day, but since it is now closed during the week as a result of water restrictions, she visits as often as she can.

“She has arthritis in her knee and swims as exercise. She now goes to Retreat and St James and wherever,” he says.

Carol was in the shallow end with her arms resting on the side of the pool. She had earplugs in and was looking out on to the water on Sunday 19 March when she was bitten by a security dog.

It is alleged a security guard let the Rottweiler loose and the dog was charging at a small boy when a lifeguard intervened.

The dog then changed course and bit Carol from behind on her upper arm.

It is alleged that the pool was crowded and the guard had trouble controlling a group of children and let the dog loose.

Carol was taken to the Hanover Park Day Hospital.

“She waited there for four hours before getting seen to,” says Pat.

He was home at the time and became worried when his wife did not return home at the expected time.

“I phoned her and she told me she was at the day hospital because of the dog bite. I was so mad that she had to sit there,” he says.

“The security guard was very irresponsible by letting his dog charge small children; the incident could have been far worse. What if the dog had gotten hold of her neck?”

The City of Cape Town contracts a private security company to work at its swimming pool.

Siyabulela Mamkeli, Mayco member (Central), says the City is aware of the ­incident.

“The security guard was not following protocol,” says Mamkeli. “The security guards on site have been threatened before and the dogs are used as a deterrent to potential threats. The security services on site are outsourced and the City advises on the number of guards required. The security guards are unarmed.”

Pat says the lifeguards visited their home after the attack and told him that a report had been filed, but no further communication has been received.

“I want to take this further,” he says. “My wife’s arm is black and blue and she is still in pain. It was not the lifeguard’s fault and I don’t think they should have come to ­apologise.”

Mamkeli says action will be taken.

“The area coordinator for security management was advised of the incident and they will take action against the company,” he says.

“This was a most unfortunate incident. The City remained in contact with the person while they were awaiting treatment at the local health facility and staff also conducted a follow-up home visit to check how the woman was doing. The City is committed to the safety of its residents, particularly when visiting public facilities and the matter is being addressed with the relevant service provider.”

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