Woman Thought to Be Dead Found Breathing in Morgue Fridge

Woman Thought to Be Dead Found Breathing in Morgue Fridge
(Screenshot/Google Maps)

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A woman who got into a severe car accident in South Africa and had been declared dead was later found breathing in the fridge at a morgue.

The woman, whose identity has not been published, was certified dead by paramedics at the scene of a pile-up outside of Carletonville near Johannesburg on June 24, reported AFP.

The ambulance service Distress Alert said that the woman was transported to a morgue fridge several hours after the crash but mortuary technicians found later that she was breathing and still alive.

“We followed our procedures—we’ve got no idea how it happened,” Distress Alert operations manager Gerrit Bradnick said.

“The crew is absolutely devastated—we’re not in the business of declaring living people dead, we’re in the business of keeping people alive.”

“This did not happen because our paramedics are not properly trained,” Bradnick told Times Live. “There is no proof of any negligence by our crew.”

Gauteng Forensic Pathology Services CEO Dr. Paul Morule told Times Live that his health department has launched an investigation.

A source at the mortuary said that his colleagues had loaded the bodies into the fridges and were filling out paperwork when one worker returned to make a last check on the bodies.

“When he pulled out the woman’s body‚ he saw that she was breathing,” the source said.

An official confirmed to the BBC that the woman is now being treated in a hospital east of Johannesburg after being referred by forensics officers.

Family members of the woman told the BBC they want to know what happened.

“As a family, we won’t talk about this unless the police, paramedics and the mortuary officials who were involved are present. We need answers,” a family member said. “The issue is that we need answers, that’s all we want and we don’t have any clarity now.”

Three people were involved in the crash. One person died and one person was injured.


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