Paramedic recounts pulling motorists out of M7 #DurbanStorm floodwater [VIDEO]

A PARAMEDIC involved in pulling stranded motorists to safety from a flash flood on the M7 during Tuesday’s harrowing storm shared her experience of entering the flooded section of the main arterial route which joins the Bluff and Clairwood areas with Umbilo and Bellair.

Motorists were trapped in their cars and trucks when the M7 between Southway Mall and South Coast Road rapidly flooded at about 11am on Tuesday, 10 October.

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Ceron Lennox responded to the emergency, and her and rescuer Ian Wessels and fireman Justin Bateman braved the cold waters to rescue the stranded motorists who were at risk from the rising waters. “On arrival we were told three adults were still in a vehicle while other people had made it to safety. The water was absolutely freezing and the wind was still howling, blowing the stinging rain into our faces. We asked around for a makeshift flotation device and some rope which the community assisted with and went in to rescue the victims. We needed to find a rope and some sort of flotation device as we were unsure if the people stranded in a bus could swim or not. We used a neighbouring factory’s piece of styrofoam as a surfboard to place the victims on and pull them to safety. They were terrified of the water,” she explained.

Rescuing people is a passion for her and she will not think twice when it comes to saving a life, “It is definitely a calling and a passion. I love my job of being able to save someone’s life and in this instance, to save people from further harm. You have to learn how to keep calm because if you panic, things will only go wrong and you might put yourself or other rescuers in danger. Keeping calm helps you think of a quick, safe plan for the situation you are dealing with. This comes with experience,” she added.

She explained that every rescue fuels her to do more for those who are in danger and need urgent assistance. “You feel good at the end of the day, knowing the person you saved has a family at home waiting for them, just like I have a family to go home to. My passion has grown over my last 12 years in the industry. Knowing you saved a life is an amazing feeling.”

 

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  AUTHOR
Lauren Beukes
Journalist

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