Stranded US students use cellphone lights to guide mountain rescuers

2016-06-13 17:42
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Cape Town – Three American students were rescued off a ledge after straying off the path in the Jonkershoek Mountains, near Stellenbosch, Wilderness Search and Rescue said on Monday.

They had walked to Second Waterfall on Sunday, when they decided to take a new route and got stuck, said WSAR spokesperson Johann Marais.

"We had to go to a point where there are no footpaths and it was dark," he said of the rescue staged around 19:00. "Luckily we were able to see them because we told them to switch on their torches on their cellphones. Our guys also wear their headlamps, so we were able to guide them."

A team of seven rescuers took some time to find a route to the students.

They traversed across the cliff with ropes and lowered two people down to the stranded group.

Marais said the team brought extra gear and taught the students how to abseil.

They took them about 15m up the cliff, before traversing about 50m across.

The team reached the ground around 2:15 on Monday. "They were not hurt at all, were high in spirits and very thankful," Marais said.

The students, a man and two women, were believed to be between 18 and 20 years of age. They had been staying at the nearby Sport for Christ Action SA camp.

Read more on:    cape town  |  search and rescue

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