The South African National Defence Force is assisting with relief and rescue efforts in Limpopo following days of heavy downpours.
This week, teams rescued two people who had been trapped for three days on an island in the Letaba River in Tzaneen in Limpopo.
Supported by ER24 crew members, the Oryx helicopter, from 17 Squadron, was used to hoist the pair.
The rescued flood victims were later taken to the Tzaneen Clinic where they were treated for dehydration and related conditions. They has since been discharged.
“In doing this task, the SANDF operates in concert with various government disaster management agencies, as part of Operation Chariot, to reach out to many trapped villagers who were severely affected by flooding conditions caused by torrential rains leading to localised flooding over most parts of South Africa since Friday last week,” said SANDF spokesperson Brigadier General Andries Mahapa.
“The SANDF activated its inherent search and rescue capabilities which received a request from Mpumalanga disaster management centre to render much-needed relief to flood victims in Limpopo,” he added.
Mahapa said the SANDF search and rescue teams were activated following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s declaration of the tate of Disaster.
ER24 spokesperson Russel Meiring said the men suffered from mild dehydration.
Elsewhere in the country, communities have kicked off clean-up operations following days of heavy rains. Many rivers have burst their banks.