Heatwave claims labourer, 5 in hospital

2012-01-18 08:20

Cape Town – The heatwave gripping the Western Cape over the past few days on Tuesday claimed a life.

A labourer on the building site of a new industrial development, Zandwyk in Suider-Paarl, died on Tuesday afternoon, presumably due to heat exhaustion. Another five labourers from the same building site were admitted to Paarl hospital.

The temperature in the Boland on Tuesday rose to the low 40s.

Provincial police spokesperson warrant officer November Filander confirmed the incident. He said ER ambulance services were called at about 12:45 but the first labourer, a 55-year-old man from Moorreesburg was found dead on the scene upon their arrival.

 "No additional information is currently available. Police will conduct an inquest," said Filander.

In towns like Paarl, Vredendal, Clanwilliam and Tulbagh, the mercury rose to 38°C and high into the 40s.

In and around Cape Town it was a "cooler" 30°C to 35°C.

The maximum temperature in George was 31°C on Tuesday. By Friday it is expected to drop to 24°C and rain has been forecast.

The Western Cape would remain hot until Thursday and relief would come only on Friday, said weather forecaster Elke Brouwers from the South African Weather Office.

Meanwhile the Cape of Good Hope SPCA said it had to rescue several dogs after owners tied them up in the searing heat, locked them in cars or left them without water.

The SPCA received at least 20 calls from people who were very worried about dogs, said SPCA spokesperson Lamees Martin.

Reporters spoke to teachers who said the heat did not bother the little ones in Grade 1.

Martha Veldsman from De Tyger Primary School in Parow said if they didn’t stop them, the children would keep on jumping on the trampoline.

They tried to stop them from being too active during class time.

Elaine Visser, Grade 1 teacher at Riebeeckstrand Primary School in Melkbosstrand let children lie down on the cool tiles at times during the day, gave them ice-cold water and wiped their faces every now and then.

Merlin Luke of Panorama Primary School said children could keep a bottle of water with them during class.

 

 
Read more on:    cape town  |  weather

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