Death toll climbs to nine as search continues
The death toll in the Jukskei drownings has climbed to nine, after seven more bodies were found on Sunday morning, 4 December, eNCA reports.
Seven bodies found on Sunday after Jukskei drownings
Around 33 church members were attending a baptism ritual along the stream of the Jukskei River on Saturday when a storm caused many members to be swept away.
One congregant was rescued, two others drowned and multiple others managed to make it back to safety.
Johannesburg Emergency Services (EMS) spokesperson, Robert Mulaudzi confirmed that emergency services managed to recover seven more bodies on Sunday morning.
They were found between the Corlett and Grayston Drive area.
Members of the EMS will be continuing their search throughout the day.
Teams working on the search consist of among others, City of Johannesburg EMS, Gauteng EMS and the South African Police Service (SAPS).
ALSO READ: Search underway for 15 people SWEPT AWAY in Jukskei River
Calls for caution when practicing religious rituals
Mulaudzi said that Johannesburg has been receiving a lot of rain, resulting in most of the rivers running full.
While Mulaudzi did not discourage congregants from performing these rituals, he did advise them to exercise caution.
Bodies have been discovered away from the stream where they went missing, which is thought to be due to the strong current.
Mulaudzi said that EMS needed to intensify its public education efforts.
He said that residents will be seeing a lot more of them, while they educate them on emergency situations.
ALSO READ: Two dead after drowning during baptism ritual at Limpopo dam