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Eskom saddened the by the fatal electrocution of Grabouw girl
Monday, 20 July 2010: Eskom can confirm that on Sunday, 19 July 2020, a young girl from Grabouw was fatally electrocuted when she made contact with an unsafe live wire running from Snake Park to Hillside hostels. 
 
The initial investigation report indicates that the girl was among a group of children who were playing in an open field between Snake Park and Hillside hostels when the incident occurred. The deceased girl’s sister who tried to assist her, suffered minor burns to her hands. She received medical attention from paramedics on the scene and is recovering at home. 
 
General Manager for Eskom Distribution in the Western Cape, Mr Alwie Lester stated: “On behalf of Eskom I wish to express my deepest condolences to the bereaved family of the deceased.  A full investigation into the incident has been launched.”
 
“I am deeply saddened by the passing of this child whose future has been so tragically taken from her and is a loss which could so easily have been averted. I also wish the injured sibling a speedy recovery,” he added.
 
In the last 12 months in the Western Cape, no deaths of minors as a result of coming into contact with illegal connections have been reported to Eskom. However, six adults have died from electrocution who are suspected to have been involved either in electricity theft, or coming into direct contact with energized wires or objects as a result of illegal and unsafe connections.
 
Hillside Hostels in Grabouw is an active electrification project initiated by the local municipality, whereby 384 connections will be made.  The electrification project is scheduled to start in September 2020 over a phased period.  While the electrification of Hillside Hostels will reduce illegal connections in the immediate area, it will never eliminate the risk of such connections.
 
The long-term solution to address illegal and unsafe connections would be to supply all areas with electricity.  Eskom is only able to electrify an area once the relevant municipality has identified and proclaimed an area to receive services. 
 
Unsafe and Illegal connections endanger the lives of many South Africans, especially children who often run barefoot and who are unaware of the danger. Contact with illegal connections can be fatal. Eskom conducts regular awareness campaigns such as customer forums, school visits, media campaigns, engaging with community leaders and community forums in areas where illegal connections are rife. Eskom technical staff regularly conduct network audits and remove unsafe and illegal connections.
 
Eskom appeals to the public to report unsafe and illegal connections, electricity theft, meter tampering, cable theft and vandalism of infrastructure by contacting the Eskom Toll-Free Crime Hotline 0800 11 27 22 or SMS Crime Line on 32211. Callers may remain anonymous.
 
 
ENDS