Judicial

Helicopter and bus crash simulation held at Otjiwarongo

Summary

A crash simulation involving a helicopter and bus full of learners was held at Otjiwarongo on Thursday morning.The simulation was organised by the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development in order to test and assess the preparedness of the local authori…

A crash simulation involving a helicopter and bus full of learners was held at Otjiwarongo on Thursday morning.

The simulation was organised by the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development in order to test and assess the preparedness of the local authority’s various emergency response units in the central areas.

The chairperson of the exercise, Gottlieb Shivute who is also the mayor of Otjiwarongo, told Nampa at the scene that the local authorities of Okahandja, Okakarara, Otjiwarongo, Otavi, Tsumeb and Grootfontein were all involved in the event.

“The emergency officials of the six local authority councils were tasked to respond to a crash that occurred after a helicopter with a pilot and a co-pilot had technical faults and crashed down into a bus which was transporting 43 learners from the Monica Geingos Junior Secondary School,” Shivute explained.

The “accident” was staged on the gravel road between Ombili informal settlement and Heroes Park residential area at the town.

“In the simulated event, both occupants in the helicopter perished, plus five learners in the bus bringing the total fatalities to seven,” relayed Shivute.

The other 38 learners sustained injuries and had to receive first aid treatment at the scene before being taken to the Otjiwarongo State Hospital, he added.

“The simulation was well organised. All rescue equipment and tools including ambulances, police officers and nurses responded within a reasonable timeframe,” noted Shivute.

On her part, the simulation evaluator from the ministry, Frederica Shigwedha said the activity impressed her, and she wished to always see all accidents being treated similarly by equipped emergency officials.

Several members of the Namibian Police Force of Otjiwarongo were present along with regional crime investigations commander, Deputy Commissioner Naukalemo Andreas and head of operations in the Otjozondjupa Region, Deputy Commissioner Moses Khairabeb.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency