Two security guards at the Groenkloof Nature Reserve in Tshwane, tragically died in their sleep on Wednesday, 2 June. It is suspected that the pair died from smoke inhalation.

GUARDS DIE FROM APPARENT SMOKE INHALATION

According to the City of Tshwane’s spokesperson Lindela Mashigo, the two security guards were found dead in a storage shelter on Wednesday morning, at 6:40, by a supervisor. The men were employed by SIDAF, a private security company that conducts services at the nature reserve.

“The guards were on night shift and the supervisor was in the process of posting the day shift team when he became aware of the two missing guards,” said Mashigo.

It is suspected that the guards died in their sleep because of smoke inhalation from an open fire in a drum after they locked themselves in the storage shelter in order to keep warm. Gauteng is currently in the grip of a cold snap, and the freezing temperatures experienced in the region this year are the coldest it has been in 2021.

A case has been reported to the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Tshwane Metro Police Department for a thorough investigation to be conducted. Mashigo, however, said that no foul play is suspected.

“The City wishes to convey its heartfelt condolences to the deceased families, friends and colleagues,” said Mashigo.

Smoke inhalation damages the body by depriving it of oxygen (asphyxiation), chemical irritation, chemical asphyxiation, or all three, according to Arrive Alive. Emergency personnel say that smoke inhalation is often dismissed as “not a serious injury.” While fires may kill or injure people directly, thick smoke can asphyxiate an individual in just 3 to 5 minutes if the smoke is filled with toxic by-product.

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Presh JM Reporter

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