Two Soweto teenagers drown after swimming in stream

The city of Johannesburg has reacted to the deaths of two teenagers by calling on the public not to swim in streams but to rather use the designated municipal swimming pools.

This is after two teenagers drowned in a stream in Kliptown, Soweto. One teen survived and was taken to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital for medical care. The children who are between the ages of thirteen and fourteen were cooling off in the stream amid high temperatures being experienced in parts of the country.

MMC for Community Development, Margaret Arnolds, says she will ensure that the public has access to swimming pools.

“As a community let all of us ensure our kids, our families don’t go to the streams and swim there. I’m also taking this upon myself to ensure that I open up the swimming pools so that our kids can swim and that they would be in a space that they are safe in. I also don’t want the marginalized kids to pay but lets take them in at least twice a week. Get them in to swim for free twice a week.”

The department of Water and Sanitation says dam levels across the country continue to drop as it hasn’t been raining sufficiently to cause significant changes.It says the heatwave in recent days is also not helping the situation.The department says the Vaal Dam is at around 30 %.

‘We are aware that with the expected rain within the next few weeks we should start seeing a recharge of our dam levels due to the rain that we are expecting,” says Department spokesperson, Sputnik Ratau.