Lightning bolt hurts nine pupils at KES
13 February 2013 | AARIFAH NOSARKA
All the boys were admitted to hospital, but four were expected to be discharged last night.
The lightning bolt apparently struck at about 4.30pm, just after the boys had finished cricket practice.
“My son had ... just come off the field when lightning struck,” said a witness who asked not to be named.
He told The Citizen two boys had suffered cardiac arrest: “I followed what needed to be done and started CPR,” said the witness, an advanced life-support paramedic.
Both boys were placed on life support before being rushed to Milpark Hospital.
Gauteng Department of Education communications head Charles Phahlane said although details were unclear, the boys had been pulling covers over the field when lightning struck.
“Two are in ICU receiving high care while the other seven are stable,” Phahlane said.
The department said investigations regarding the incident would be initiated. All the victims were Grade 11 and 12 learners aged from 16 to 18.
Last night grieving family members gathered outside the hospital’s casualty entrance, waiting for news. One mother was seen sobbing near the hospital’s parking area.
Milpark’s trauma group manager, Mande Toubkin, confirmed the victims had been admitted but could not disclose names, ages or injuries.
Toubkin said, however, that all the teens were alive and undergoing treatment.
King Edward VII School posted updates on a social networking site regarding the conditions of its pupils.
“Update: 9 boys struck by lightning, 7 stable and 2 under high care,” the school posted on its twitter page. “Full report to follow. Thank you for the messages and support.”
A second update read: “#KESBOARDINGPARENTS Please note all boarders are fine and safe. Only 1st team cricketers affected ...”
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