‘Mad Max’s deadly theatrix

2017-11-30 06:01
The man was a bizarre sight on Monday evening as he scaled up dangerous poles near the Nyanga Junction train station. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

The man was a bizarre sight on Monday evening as he scaled up dangerous poles near the Nyanga Junction train station. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

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A Gugulethu man became the centre of attention and brought rail traffic to a halt after he climbed a mast pole between the Nyanga Junction and Philippi train stations.

The man, believed to be in his early 20s, remained at the summit for more than two hours, calling for his mother to bring him clothes.

An onlooker said he stumbled on the sight as he was alighting from his work transport. The Thambo Village resident said he and a few onlookers tried to coax him to get down.

“It was around 17:30 when I was getting off the work car that I saw him dancing on top of the poles.

It was funny and scary at the same time as trains kept passing under him and If he’d made one mistake, he would have been electrocuted,” said Songezu Kupe.

Kupe said the man showed no signs of fear, seemingly unaware of the risk on his life. “He just danced and said he will only go down when his mother brings him some clothes,” he said.

When City Vision reporters arrived at the scene around 18:00, the man was in a jovial mood, dancing naked and entertaining the crowds.

Eventually, the police, traffic officers and emergency personnel arrived and tried to convince him to scale down.

It was only after the arrival of his mother and sister that he came down.

Neither of his relatives was willing to speak to journalists.

Metrorail spokesperson Riana Scott said the man was taken to hospital to have him assessed.

“At 18:40 on Monday evening it was reported that an unknown person had scaled a mast pole between Nyanga and Phillipi Stations (next to Lansdowne Bridge).

SAPS (Philipp Rapid Rail response Unit) and emergency services responded to the call, managed to coax the man down and subsequently traced his mother in Gugulethu. He was taken to hospital at 20:17 for assessment,” she said. She added that the man’s theatrics did not affect train services.

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