Ambulance hijacked; paramedics kidnapped, tied up


An ambulance from the Gauteng emergency services was hijacked in the early hours of Saturday morning in Nellmapius, east of Pretoria. During the incident, two paramedics were taken to a shelter in the woods near the Pienaars River and tied up.

JP von Benecke, deputy director of the Gauteng emergency services, says an ambulance from the Gauteng emergency services’ base in Mamelodi was called to a home address in Nellmapius at around 02:25 after a man (48) collapsed.

Two paramedics responded to this emergency call. While searching for the home address in the area, two men stopped the ambulance. The men initially had a conversation with the two paramedics before they suddenly pointed firearms at the paramedics.

The hijackers and two other accomplices drove with the two paramedics and the ambulance to an unknown destination where the paramedics were taken to a shelter in the woods near the Pienaars River upon their arrival. The paramedics were tied up here before the hijackers took their mobile phones from them and asked for their bank details, says col. Dimakatso Nevhuhulwi, spokesperson for the police.

The hijackers finally fled with the ambulance, leaving the two paramedics behind in the shelter.

One of the paramedics managed to free himself and the two called for help.

The ambulance was later found abandoned in CT Spurs Street in Nellmapius with the help of a tracking system. However, there was no sign of the hijackers.

Von Benecke says the two paramedics suffered minor scratches and bruises during the incident, but are severely traumatized and will need to receive trauma counseling. The necessary arrangements for that will be made soon.

Nevhuhulwi says the police are investigating a case of hijacking and kidnapping.