The family of a six-year-old boy who fell into a manhole on Sunday has been told by rescue divers to prepare for the worst.
The Johannesburg Emergency Services (EMS) search and rescue team returned on Sunday returned to the site in Dlamini, Soweto Tuesday to locate Khayalethu Magadla, who is believed to have fallen down a manhole not far from his home while playing football with his friends.
When the Die Search for his body began on the second day, EMS spokesman Robert Mulaudzi said the chances of finding the boy alive were slim and the operation had now been declared a search and rescue.
“Overlooking the time frame of the incident , it has been three days since it was reported so we say the chances of finding him alive are very slim.
“We have also informed the family and they have assures us that they understand and that they just want wi r bring the remains of her son so they can come to an end.”
The rescue teams, consisting of police divers, firefighters and engineers, went from one area to another in Soweto to search the sewage pipes and open hoping for a breakthrough.
The system is said to be huge, flowing from Meadowlands to the Olifantsvlei water treatment plant.
Manholes in the area are 1.8m deep and 1 .2 m wide with water moving at speeds of up to 11 km/h, posing a challenge for divers who need to be careful when entering.
Rescuers also used cameras to monitor the rainwater pipes to search.
Mulaudzi said although it was not clear when the body would be recovered, search teams promised the family they would bring their son home.
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