Lightning strike kills KZN mom and dad; baby orphaned

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Two people were struck by lightning in Gauteng.
Two people were struck by lightning in Gauteng.
File, iStock

A six-month old baby was left orphaned when a lightning strike killed both parents in uMhlabuyalingana, near Jozini, in northern KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday.

Another lightning strike also claimed the life of a 70-year-old man in Jozini ward 15  in Ndabeni, said Cogta.

Provincial MEC Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Sipho Hlomuka said inclement weather conditions continued to wreak havoc across rural communities in KZN. He said disaster management teams have been dispatched to the area to provide support to the affected the Mngomezulu family. 

Hlomuka also expressed his concern about the increasing number of incidents where lightning strikes kill people in the province.

The latest incident meant that within the space of two weeks, KZN has lost eights lives - two in Nongoma, one in uLundi, two in Mooi-Mpofana two in uMhlabuyalingana and one in Ndabeni -  as a result of lightning strikes. 

“We are appealing to all residents to follow the safety protocols that need to be applied wherever there are weather warnings,” said Hlomuka. 

If outdoors, people are urged to seek shelter immediately but not under a tree, under telephone lines or power lines. They must avoid outdoor activities as hail, strong winds and lightning may result in injuries. They must also stay away from low-lying roads and bridges as they are susceptible to flooding.

Hlomuka said: "If possible, stay indoors away from windows, shelter pets, cover vehicles and disconnect electrical appliances." 

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