SAAF helicopter crashes near Cape Town
The Du Toitskloof mountain pass in the Western Cape has been closed after a helicopter crashed onto the road after flying into power cables.
The SANDF confirmed the crash in a brief statement‚ but provided no details‚ saying further details would be provided later.
Provincial Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said that the Oryx helicopter crash landed around 2pm causing major traffic delays in the area.
“I can confirm that an Oryx chopper went down. It is on the Worcester side of the Du Toitskloof Pass at the Klip River bridge‚” said Africa.
“There [were] overhead power cables that were struck and then the chopper went down.”
ER24 spokesman Russel Meiring said that eight people were injured in the crash‚ one of them seriously.
“ER24 paramedics‚ along with several other services‚ arrived on the scene to find to find a large helicopter lying across the entire highway. Debris from the helicopter was spread across the scene.
“Traffic authorities began to close off the road and divert traffic while paramedics began to assess the patients.
“Eight people were found to be injured. One had sustained serious injuries while seven others had sustained minor to moderate injuries.
“Paramedics treated the patients and provided the seriously injured with advanced life support interventions before they were transported to a nearby hospital for further treatment‚” Meiring said.
According to Africa‚ traffic has been diverted from the pass‚ a section of which is the historic Huguenot Tunnel.
“Worcester people need to take either the Villiers Dorp/Grabouw road or Tulbagh/Wellington road and also visa versa coming from Cape Town.
Africa said that teams were on the scene to clear the power cables and helicopter from the road.
“Seeing that it’s a SANDF helicopter and there are power cables that Eskom need to deal with it could take quite a long time until the road is reopened‚” he said.
The Atlas Oryx is a medium-sized utility helicopter and is used primarily as a transport helicopter.
- With additional reporting by Farren Collins.