What was planned to be a scenic relaxing day driving over the Swarberg Pass to Prince Albert turned out to be a life changing experience long to be remembered.
Thanks to Zanè, we spotted a car that tumbled down the Swartberg Pass and immediately paused our day trip to assist. I ran down the slope and I think I might have given Usain Bolt a run for his world record. As I came closer, I saw that the car was fixated, and completely ruined from the tumble, allthough a woman’s silhouette lured from the car. I quickly made an effort to get inside the car to evaluate the lady that was sitting very still with her eyes closed (It was easily one of the scariest moments of my life).
I reached for the side of her neck to feel a pulse, and almost exploded with happiness the moment I felt a strong pulse.
By the grace of God, a police van drove right passed my Dad as he started decending down the pass in search for cellphone signal. They immediately notified the ambulance by means of radio communication.
In the mean time, I started talking to the lady that was still in the same position as a few moments ago. She only responded with small finger movements. I started looking for identification and again, by some miraculous way, spotted her camouflaged handbag that was roughly 10m away from the car, infused in dust and soot from the burnt protea bushes. I quickly ran through her handbag in search of something that will give me an indication of who she is. I could finally put a name to the face. Her cellphone was no where to be found. I knew I had to keep an eye on her vital signs, but I also knew I had to notify her family. After much effort, I found her phone under the drivers seat. The pin code, was my worst nightmare. I gently asked her what her pin code was, but received a very faint reply that, she couldn’t remember.
Zane descended down the slope with a police officer. They started with multiple phone calls in order to get her husband’s contact details but proofed the South African system to be ridiculously useless!
It felt like hours has gone by, although it had only been a couple of minutes. After a few attempts to get her pin code, she finally was able to stutter a few numbers which in the end, I could manage to unlock her phone with.
I phoned her husband and assured him that she is allright and that they are on the way with a helicopter. Not long after, the helicopter arrived and it was pretty spectacular to see and experience, first hand, how a medical team goes to work. We’ve been through so many first aid and basic life support courses, but being on a real scene, changes quite a few things..
The thought of her not having been spotted on that slope is driving me insane, because chances of anyone spotting her, were very slim. Zane and I are in a habit of perusing the beautiful landscapes we get to see when driving on mountain passes, which states my opinion that we see things others never do. I believe that God’s mercy was all over our eyes and actions today and I thank Him that we could be apart of a life changing experience, rather than reading in the newspaper of a missing woman from Oudtshoorn.
Romans 8:28 …and we know that God causes all things to work together for good, for those who love God, to those who are called according to His plan and purpose.
More than anything, again today, I realized that “life” on earth can end in the blink of an eye.
(Zane Coetzee and Lana Laubscher are biocineticists in Great Brak River and George)