WITH just a week before the festive season officially ends, many locals and holidaymakers are making the most of the last few days of holiday visiting the Durban beaches and beachfront attractions before heading back to work and school next week.
eThekwini Municipality has announced that the city once again enjoyed a bumper holiday season with an estimated 462 480 people visiting various beaches around the city over the first weekend of the New Year.
During the course of the New Year weekend, approximately 98 rescues were carried out and 7926 people received first aid treatment, mainly for blue bottle stings.
More than 91 205 children were issued with armbands, with approximately 286 children finding themselves separated from their guardians. They were subsequently re-united with their families. “An 11-year-old boy from Vryheid spent two nights at the overnight facility when the taxi he was travelling in left without him on its return to home. He has since been successfully re-united with his family,” said eThekwini Municipality’s Deputy Head of Communications, Mandla Nsele.
According to Nsele, on Sunday, 31 December, a drowning occurred at uMkhomazi River after an adult climbed onto a home-made floating device which subsequently sank. A three-year old child was rescued during the incident. On Saturday, 6 January 2018, a man drowned at La Mercy Lagoon during high tide as he attempted to cross the river mouth.
With just a few days left until the end of the festive season, acting chairperson of the Festive Season management Committee (FESMAC), Malcolm Canham, assured the public that all operational plans will remain in place for the duration of the festive period.
“Law enforcement officers will be out in full force to ensure that patrons are able to enjoy themselves in a safe and responsible way. Our lifeguards, beach buddies and child-minders will also remain at the beachfront to give assistance where required,” said Canham, adding that additional staff brought in to assist during the festive season will stand down on Monday, 15 January.
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