A well-known businessman and his sister died on Friday, May 14, after the helicopter he was piloting crashed into the Vaal Dam.
According to reports, the pilot, Essie Esterhuysen had been treating his sister Dané, to a weekend away.
He had picked her up by helicopter in Wilderness in the Southern Cape on Friday.
A News24 report quoted Vaal Marina Community Policing Forums’s (CPF) Kevin Prinsloo as saying that a student fishing near the crash site got into his canoe and paddled frantically towards the burning helicopter.
He managed to remove the woman but she had not survived the crash.
The body of the pilot was later found in the wreckage the report said.
Pretoria Rekord said both died when the helicopter plunged into the dam, 200 metres from the bank.
Essie’s two beagles, Pablo and Abigail, also died in the accident, the report said
The entire incident was caught on video.
WARNING: this should not be watched by sensitive viewers.
Esterhuysen was a well-known businessman. He founded the Esgro Group, responsible for popular franchises like Steers and Wimpy.
In a statement, The NSRI said they were alerted to reports of a helicopter accident just after 18:00 on Friday.
“Just after 18:00 on Friday, 14 May, NSRI Vaal Dam duty crew were alerted to reports of a helicopter accident on the Vaal Dam. ARCC (Aeronautical Rescue Coordination Centre) multiple emergency services. On arrival on the scene, near to the Vaal Marina, 200 meters off-shore, a Robinson R44 helicopter was found to have ditched in the Vaal Dam.”
“A bystander, using a rowing craft, had recovered an adult female from the wreckage and sadly she was declared deceased by paramedics. A Police Dive Unit, assisted by NSRI, scuba-dived on the wreckage and recovered the body of an adult male believed to be the pilot and sadly he was declared deceased by paramedics.”
Picture: Facebook / South Africa Uncut