Local rescue team tells of Haiti horror

2010-01-30 00:00

A DURBAN University of Technology rescue team received a heroes’ welcome when they arrived at Durban International Airport yesterday after a week in earthquake-ravaged Haiti.

The Rapid Response Emergency Medical Care and Rescue (EMCR) team’s trip was made possible by non-governmental organisation the Gift of the Givers. It was the second team from South Africa to respond to the Haitian disaster.

Exhausted, yet excited to see family and friends, Yugan Pillay, Yugan Naidoo, Raveen Naidoo, Shanon du Randt, Sagie Naguran and private EMCR practitioner Charlie McClung all agreed that the experience has changed their lives.

Yugan Naidoo of Hayfields told the Weekend Witness that they had treated almost 400 patients in the past week. “We got there eight days after the quake so rescue work had started to slow down. We set up medical tents. We had four doctors and six paramedics at our tents,” he said.

“The heat was unbearable. The stench of rotting bodies hung in the air. It was challenging trying to save lives in those conditions,” he said.

Naidoo said that nothing could have prepared them for the “mountains of dead bodies”, orphaned children and the lack of proper facilities.

“During the day, it was just work and more work. At night, you thought about the patients you treated and your family,” he said.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.