National 9.9.2016 11:13 am

Man rescued from stormwater drain after assault

The man rescued. Picture: Lowvelder

The man rescued. Picture: Lowvelder

He then fell into the drain, and the force of the water dragged him into a pipe.

A man had to be rescued from a stormwater drain after he was assaulted on Bester Street, Mbombela, in Mpumalanga.

The incident occurred on Saturday night when Herman Raath, 28, who works in Mozambique, was staying at the New Frontier Backpackers Lodge, Lowvelder reported.

“I walked to the Total Garage. After I had an argument with a friend, I decided to walk back to the lodge. Along the way, near Absa Square, I noticed two men following me,” Raath told Lowvelder from his bed in Rob Ferreira Hospital on Wednesday.

‘Luckily, they did not find my car.’

He said they kept behind him until he reached Bester Street, where they caught him off-guard and shoved him from behind.

“I fell on to the edge of the drain. I grabbed a brick or a rock and hit one of them, but by then they had me pinned to the ground,” he said.

He then fell into the drain, and the force of the water dragged him into the pipe.

The attackers took his phone, wallet and car keys.

“Luckily, they did not find my car. I lay there calling for help for a long time. Eventually someone heard me,” Raath said.

He sustained injuries to the head, back, neck and shoulder and broke his hip.

A fireman at the scene said a security officer had heard Raath’s cries for help and contacted the control room.

“We went down into the drain to stabilise him. We didn’t know how long he had been in the water,” he said.

R24 medical services branch manager Greg Wilcox said they had received the call out at about 2pm. There were police, the fire department and various security guards at the scene when he and his team arrived.

“I could see he had sustained injuries to his head and had suffered a possible hip fracture,” he said.

Police spokesperson Captain Dawie Pretorius confirmed the SAPS were investigating the case.

– Caxton News Service

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