South Africa – 9 Dead, 8 Missing After Flash Floods in Johannesburg

At least 17 people are thought to have been swept away by flash flooding along a river in a Johannesburg suburb in South Africa on 03 December 2022.

Search for missing along the Juksei river in Alexandra, Johannesburg, South Africa, 04 December 2022. Photo: Screenshot via Johannesburg Emergency Services

According to Johannesburg Emergency Services (EMS), teams were carrying out search and rescue operations along the Juksei River in the Alexandra area of the city after 17 church members were reported swept away by a flash flood following heavy rains in the area. Reportedly the victims were members of a church group conducting a baptism ritual at the time.

The bodies of two members of the group were found late on 03 December. One person was rescued alive and received medical treatment.

Search operations were halted late on 03 December but continued early on 04 December when Johannesburg EMS confirmed they had found 7 more bodies. The search continues for the 8 who remain missing.

Johannesburg EMS spokesperson, Robert Mulaudzi, said “Of course, they might have run while the storm came through so we will also activate the services of the local pastor to try and remove any uncertainty about their whereabouts.”

In late November public safety officials visited communities along the Juksei River to assess flood risks and increase awareness of flood dangers.

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