Family's fatal plunge into harbour probed

2012-07-17 12:31

Richards Bay - A father and his two young sons died when their car plunged into the Richards Bay harbour on Monday afternoon.

The mother, who was in a severe state of shock following the incident, was at the local police station on Monday night, assisting police with their inquiries.

It is alleged that the family - father, mother and two boys - had attempted to gain access to the back of the port at 13:00, but were turned away by security guard Smangele Mkhize. “I told them they are not allowed to enter here unless they have a permit,” he said.

However, he said, they returned an hour later, this time without the mother, and went over the edge into the water.

The mother will on Tuesday be asked to identify the bodies, after which post-mortems would be done, said police.

Colonel Jay Naicker said officers were informed of the incident at 15:00.


“Police divers were dispatched to the scene and recovered the bodies of an adult male and two young boys,” he said.

Netcare911 spokesperson Chris Botha said paramedics had tried to revive the children, who they estimated had been in the water for about 20 minutes. He said children often survive even after some time in water, especially if the water is cold. However, both the boys were declared dead at the scene.

Police divers had also searched for a woman’s body for a few hours, as earlier reports had indicated that a complete family had been in the car.

The family’s Toyota Tazz was thereafter recovered from the water.

The incident happened on a part of the Waterfront which is owned by Transnet, and which backs onto warehouses and offices.

Naicker told The Witness that the police would release the names of the dead once all family members have been informed of the tragedy.

He said police were investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident, and it was unclear if it was deliberate or an accident.

  • simon.elrick.7 - 2012-07-17 12:37

    A car does not simply PLUNGE in to a harbour. This was premeditated. Very sad and senseless loss of life.

  • nosiphom.mazibuko - 2012-07-17 12:57

    If you are tired of living drive into the habour alone!! Whay take someone else with you????

      kevin.moreland2 - 2012-07-17 13:16

      stop jumping to conclusions the headline doesnt read man drives off bridge with sons in car!!!!

  • Jandl Reevo Reeves - 2012-07-17 12:58

    I hate stories like this....makes me want to cry considering I have 2 children of my own

      jija.bomu - 2012-07-17 14:25

      This is very sad. But the story does not make any sense at all. Security guards are the most dangerous beings on earth, watch them. How can someone, after being told by the security that they must bring a permit if there need entrance, returns after an hour and drives into the port over the edge f the harbor and drown with his sons. How did they get entrance when they returned? I have noted that security are capable of giving you wrong information. I have been given wrong information a lot of times in which security guards orchestrated a plot.

  • charlie.vanbergen - 2012-07-17 13:20

    Poor, poor woman! How utterly devastating.

      nosiphom.mazibuko - 2012-07-17 14:02

      Exactly, and the poor boy who may not have been tired of living!

  • mark.govender.94 - 2012-07-17 14:03

    Damn, definitely suicide, i think he initially tried to take the wife along but once they got home she probably resisted and he took the kids, sad story but if she did something to hurt him then why didnt he make sure he got her in the car as well???? makes you wonder. give us an update news24. RIP to the 3 people that lost their lives

  • Dawn Campbell Gibson - 2012-07-17 14:14

    Selfish bastard. Leave your wife and even your kids, dont kill them! I hope the kids rest in peace! as for dad, rot!!!

  • celeste.hadlow - 2012-07-17 15:23

    please dont bring the security guards into this. We interviewed her lastnight. If you were at the scene you will note that there is no strong barrier barring you from Transnet property. You could drive through the fence on a bicycle if you wanted. There is no way she could have stopped him when he came back.

  • sandile.memela1 - 2012-07-18 05:41

    I'm from Richrds bay,

  • sandile.memela1 - 2012-07-18 05:41

    I'm from Richrds bay,

  • Raymond - 2012-07-18 06:45

    If suicide, unfortunately not the first one in the harbour in R/Bay. RIP.

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