News24

Adventure jump ends tragically

2009-10-04 11:58

Nelspruit - A woman from Phalaborwa died on Saturday after she and her husband, an officer in the army, took part in a cable gorge swinging jump that went tragically wrong at the Big Swing near Graskop.

According to bystanders, Captain Samuels and his wife took a tandem jump and after jumping from the platform, hit a cliff.

Samuels and his wife were bound to one another and his wife was killed instantly.

A large group of people witnessed the accident in horror and the Big Swing was temporarily closed after the incident.

Husband rescued


Emergency Medical Services (EMS) retrieved the couple via helicopter from a stream at the bottom of the gorge, about 120m from the top of the ravine.

Captain Samuels was taken to a Nelspruit hospital.

According to a hospital spokesperson, his condition was critical on Saturday evening.

An investigation is under way to determine what had happened.

Michael van der Merwe, owner of the Big Swing, said human error might have been responsible for the accident, but that no one at this stage knew what had happened.

Never had an accident

He emphasised that safety procedures and systems were working and that the cable “definitely didn’t break”.

The gear the couple was wearing also did not tear, break or rip.

“More than 100 000 people have taken jumps here and we have never had an injury, accident or death,” said Van der Merwe.