Brackenfell High School is in mourning following the death of Grade 11 pupil Juan Myburg and his mother, Jennifer, in a crash on Langeberg Road, Sonstraal Heights, on Thursday June 30. Ms Myburg, 52, and Juan, 17, from Kraaifontein, died in a head-on collision with a truck carrying cement, around midday.
In a Facebook post on Friday July 1, the school wrote: “It is with great sadness that we share the following news with you, Juan Myburg in Grade 11 A3 and his mother died in a car crash in Durbanville yesterday. Our hearts go out to his father and the rest of the family. Let us carry the family in our prayers.”
Durbanville police spokesman Captain Marchell Rhode said the crash occurred at 11.40am.
“A white Renault Scenic was driving towards Durbanville in Langeberg Road. The female driver drove into a truck loaded with cement bags. The truck was driving in the direction of Kraaifontein in the correct lane,” he said.
ER24 paramedics, along with Life Healthcare and Metro services, arrived on the scene and found the truck and car in the middle of the road.
“On closer inspection, paramedics found the lifeless body of a woman lying in the passenger seat of the light motor vehicle. Unfortunately, the woman had already succumbed to her multiple, fatal injuries, prior to the arrival of paramedics. Nothing more could be done for the woman, and she was declared dead on scene,” said ER24 spokesman Russel Meiring.
Juan was found lying on the pavement a few metres from the vehicle.
“It is believed that he was pulled from the vehicle by members of the public,” Mr Meiring said.
Juan had sustained “numerous injuries and showed no signs of life,” Mr Meiring said.
“The driver of the truck did not sustain any injuries,” he said.
Captain Rhode said there had been a third person in the vehicle, a woman, but her condition was unknown.
A Facebook entry from Brackenfell High School, including one from eyewitness Shaun James de Roubaix, referred to the third person in the car.
Mr De Roubaix told Northern News he had been coming over the hill when he saw steam and smoke coming from the Scenic.
“I stopped and ran towards the car. The girl was in the front passenger side, she was hanging through the windscreen, crying and screaming for help. While running towards the car I noticed that it was on fire. I immediately pulled open the windscreen with my bare hands.”
He said the car had started to fill with smoke and that his only thought was to get her out before it burst into flames.
“I got her out and carried her to the pavement. That’s when I noticed Juan in the back passenger seat. I went to the right-hand side of car where I smashed the driver’s window and tried to open door but the door was jammed. While in the car I yelled to my sister to ask someone for a fire extinguisher. She got two and started to put out the fire in the engine area. I managed to pull Juan out through the right-hand side back door.”
Mr De Roubaix said he could not believe that no one had come to help them.
“I laid him on his left side. My sister sat with him, while I tried to free the mom. I immediately checked for a pulse, but she had no pulse and showed no signs of life.”
Mr Meiring said paramedics had spent 40 minutes at the scene trying to resuscitate Juan.
“Once the patient’s vital signs returned, he was rushed by ER24 ambulance to Mediclinic Durbanville for urgent treatment. Upon arrival at hospital, the child’s vital signs deteriorated. Paramedics and hospital staff, once again, initiated CPR and advanced life support interventions. Unfortunately, after a further 20 minutes, no vital signs returned and the boy was declared dead.”
Durbanville police said they are investigating a case of culpable homicide.
On the school’s Facebook page, many people sympathised with the family, including Tracy van Rhyn who said: “May the Lord give the family the strength that is needed to get them through this horrific tragedy that they are facing. Once again my deepest, deepest sympathy.”