Two of the survivors who suffered dehydration at Kakamas in the Northern Cape say they are happy to be alive.
Seven farm workers died last week due to heat stroke. The Northern Cape Department of Health initially said one survivor was hospitalised but it has now been confirmed that it is two.
Seven die of heatstroke in the Northern Cape:
Lesang Motswedi, one of the survivors explains that she says she didn’t see anything. Motswedi says that people who came to visit her told her that she was shaking.
Another survivor, Brenda Molaphene travelled from Kuruman to the Southern Farm in 2019 to make a living for herself and three children. She says she won’t return to the farm after her traumatic experience.
Dr. Pasquin George, who treated the patients at the Kakamas Hospital, says the following are the symptoms of a heat stroke:
“So to prevent heat exhaustion they must try and minimise the clothes that they are wearing. I’m saying this especially for our farm workers who wear overalls the whole day. When we see a person starting to have symptoms of heat stroke, which is dizziness, generalised weakness you can put ice bags especially under the armpits for them to cool down.”
An investigation by the Labour Department is currently under way, with a report expected to be released. Labour minister Thulas Nxesi is also expected to pay a visit to the farms on Monday.
NC Heat stroke survivors share their trauma: