Accident victim: ‘It felt like I was doing the Superman’

CAZ van Schalkwyk after she was flung off her scooter on the night of the accident.

“I literally felt like I was doing the ‘Superman’. All I saw was white while flying through the air.”

This was how Carenza “Caz” van Schalkwyk (31) described the scooter accident she was involved in on Elgin Road on the night of February 9.

Van Schalkwyk was knocked over by a white Nissan X-Trail SUV at the intersection of Elgin Road and Soutpansberg Drive. She was on her way home from work in Linksfield when the incident occurred. She was only 2km away from her house.

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Woman seriously injured in Elgin Road accident

She was riding down Elgin Road on her black Big Boy scooter towards the intersection where Soutpansberg and Mooirivier drives cross Elgin Road. She said the traffic light was green for her.

“As I was proceeding, a red hatchback coming from the opposite direction quickly turned right in front of me into Mooirivier Drive towards McDonald’s, even though I had right of way,” Van Schalkwyk said.

Van Schalkwyk said the white SUV took the same chance. “I hooted at the SUV but the driver didn’t hear or see me, even though I had my lights on and was wearing luminous pink clothing. She ended up hitting me.”

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The impact sent Van Schalkwyk flying off her scooter. She landed on her right side, injuring her hip and shoulder. The scooter’s handles landed on top of her left foot.

“The pain was immediate and excruciating. Luckily, I was still conscious and asked someone who had stopped to help me to call my partner, Maureen.”

Johannesburg-based police officers, who Van Schalkwyk described as being “brilliant”, also stopped at the scene to help.

Paramedics were also called to the scene, with Emer-G-Med arriving first. ER24 transported her to Arwyp, where she spent about a week before being discharged on the night of February 15.

“I was in ICU for the first two days in hospital, then moved to high care for two more days before being placed in a normal ward.”

Van Schalkwyk is now at home recovering with the help of her family. She is using crutches to get herself around and admits it has not been easy.

“During the day I’m alone and have to do everything myself. It gets better when the kids and my partner get back from school and work.”

She has been booked off work for six weeks and will also have to go see an orthopaedic surgeon. The scooter was damaged beyond repair and she will have to get a new one.

Although the accident has left her a bit shaken and she does not want to drive down the road where it happened, it still hasn’t deterred her from riding again.

“I’ve been riding for about six or seven years and I love it, so the accident won’t stop me. I just need to get another bike when I recover and I’ll be good to go.”

Nolwazi Dhlamini
Senior Journalist

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