IN A bizarre incident yesterday afternoon a woman had to perform CPR on her husband after he was struck by lightning while standing next to their vehicle in Bergville, KwaZulu Natal.
The couple, from Alberton in the South of Johannesburg, went away for their wedding anniversary to a resort in the Bergville area.
According to the man’s wife they went for a drive shortly after it rained. While traveling on a small road the couple noticed an ‘amazing cloud with rays of sun burning through it’, said Werner Vermaak, an ER24 spokesperson.
They decided to pull over and her husband got out of the vehicle to take a picture of the cloud. According to the wife, her husband was standing on the driver’s side of the car with the door open. She was busy on her cell phone when she heard an overpowering bang. She immediately looked up and could not see her husband. She explained to paramedics that she immediately got out of the vehicle in search for her husband and found him lying next to the vehicle showing no signs of life.”
Vermaak said the 56-year-old had an extensive burn wound to his left shoulder and around his neck.
“His wife explained that the top part of his shirt was completely torn to pieces and scattered around him. She said that she immediately phoned the resort where they were staying at and asked them to call an ambulance after giving them their approximate location.”
She explained that her husband was not breathing and she could not find a pulse. She immediately started CPR on him while waiting for an ambulance.
While performing CPR a taxi drove past and pulled over. An occupant from the taxi ran up to the woman and stated that she is a nurse and offered to help. They then performed CPR together,” said Vermaak.
“The woman explained that while they were performing CPR, more and more people from the taxi started to gather around them and started to sing and pray.”
Shortly before paramedics from ER24 arrived on the scene the man regained a pulse and spontaneous breathing. Paramedics found the man sitting in the car complaining of only being nausea and that he could not hear anything.
“The paramedics treated the man for his burn wounds and rushed him off to a hospital in Ladysmith for further care. Paramedics found the man’s neck jewellery in pieces next to the car. The car also had a deep dent on the roof, possibly due to the lighting strike.”
The woman explained that they were planning the getaway for the weekend and would have returned to Johannesburg today.
The man is currently in a stable condition in hospital and undergoing tests.