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Nephew, 12, and uncle electrocuted while picking avocados: Eskom

A 12-year-old boy and his uncle died of electrocution on Saturday, 14 August, while harvesting avocados from a tree in Ekangala, Gauteng. Eskom and the…

A 12-year-old boy and his uncle died of electrocution on Saturday, 14 August, while harvesting avocados from a tree in Ekangala, Gauteng. Eskom and the South African Police Service (SAPS) are investigating the matter.

ESKOM INVESTIGATING ELECTROCUTING

The 12-year-old was reportedly using a steel pipe with a wire to harvest from a tree and accidentally made contact with an overhead electricity line, according to Eskom’s preliminary investigation into the incident.

The boy was electrocuted and unfortunately, his uncle suffered the same fate when he attempted to help. Eskom said the police and paramedics declared them both dead at the scene.

“We are saddened by the loss of life, particularly in this manner,” said the national power provider in a statement on Tuesday, 17 August.

“We consistently try to prevent such incidents by educating members of the public on electricity safety. It is even more regretful that this incident happens during Eskom’s National Electricity Safety Month where we raise awareness about the safe use of electricity and encourage families and communities to stop unsafe electricity practices,” said Kith Malitsa, the SHEQS Manager in Gauteng.

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Eskom warned that trees growing under power lines can be fatally dangerous, as it was in this case, and discouraged communities from planting trees in dangerous places.

Members of the public are encouraged to report any trees making contact with electricity lines to Eskom. They are also encouraged to report any incidents of tampering with the electricity network or any illegal tampering to the crime line at 0800-11-27-22.

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