Jeep Team’s Multisport Superstars Set for ITU World Triathlon Series

No Comments »Written on April 23rd, 2015 by
Categories: Life
Mikaela Jonsson

Mikaela Jonsson

This weekend Jeep Team’s multisport superstars - Mikaela Jonsson and Michael Lord – will be racing against triathletes from across the globe at the Discovery World Triathlon Cape Town, which takes place at the brand new Green Point Athletics Stadium in the Mother City from 25 – 26 April 2015.

The Cape Town event marks the fourth stop and the third continent of the 10-race ITU World Triathlon Series, known as the ‘pinnacle of triathlon’, which is broadcast in over 160 countries and attracts over 130 world-class elite triathletes. The current Olympic, European and Commonwealth men’s triathlete champion, Alistair Brownlee (Great Britain), and double Olympian Nicola Spirig (Switzerland) will both be competing in the Cape Town event.

Jonsson and Lord will be entering the ‘Sprint’ race, consisting of a 500m swim in the V&A Waterfront’s Quay 6; a 20km cycle through the streets of Cape Town; and a 5km run through the Green Point Urban Park, ending at the Green Point Athletics Stadium.

Other Jeep Team racing news…


After flying the flag for South Africa at Round 1 of the UCI BMX Supercross World Cup in Manchester, UK, Jeep Team’s Kyle Dodd is back on home soil, and preparing to compete at the BMX National Age Group (N.A.G) Championship Series. Legs 1 – 3 of the series are taking place at the Germiston BMX Club in Gauteng, from 25 - 26 April 2015.

Jeep Team’s youngest athlete, Alex Dolman (15), will also be competing in the series, which is considered excellent training ahead of the 2015 UCI BMX World Championships in Belgium. Dodd and Dolman will both be competing in the World Championships, happening from 17 – 25 July 2015.


On Saturday, Jeep Team’s cross-country pro, Dylan Rebello, will be riding in Race#3 of the SA XCO Cup Championship, which takes place at Mankele Mountain Biking Trails, near White River in Mpumalanga.


Jeep Team’s multiple world champion paddler, Hank McGregor, will be looking to extend his Bay Union Surfski Series lead on Monday, 27 April, as he competes in Race #2 of the series – the McCarthy Toyota Durban King of the Bay. McGregor dominated the first race of the series from start to finish.

Jeep Team’s Barry Lewin has an action-packed weekend ahead of him. From Friday to Sunday he’ll be competing in the 2015 South African Surf Lifesaving Champs in Durban, leading the team as KwaZulu-Natal Captain. On Monday, he’ll then be racing the Durban King of the Bay surfski race.

Also view:

Mountain Bike Events / Planning and the Safety of Bikers

Mountain Bike Safety and Riding on the Trail

Endurance Sports, Driver Fatigue and Road Safety

Michael Lord

Michael Lord

Will I get burnt by my insurance policy if load shedding makes the alarm system go out?

IMG_7690Load shedding has become a South African reality! This evil affecting our daily lives seems to be going nowhere - at least for the next two years. As with all other set-backs we have learnt to make adjustments to our daily lives. Many of us have had to rely on generators at our places of work or have bought a few candles for immediate relief at our homes.

As someone who is often on the road and have a townhouse which is more like a "lock-up -and- go", I am often reminded of load shedding at my home when I return to my home and hear the continuous and somewhat irritating "beeb beeb" sound of the alarm system. My PVR / DSTV system has the ability to reboot itself but my alarm system is not able to do so... This has raised the question... what if my house is burgled and my alarm system is not activtated due to load shedding - will my home and household insurance policy still cover me for the losses incurred?

I decided to approach the legal people at OUTsurance with a few questions:

Does load shedding expose insurers to increased risk?

It is probable that our risk may increase due to lessened security devices.

There is a general duty on home owners to have their alarm systems activated if they at the time of taking out insurance indicate that the house has an alarm system installed – Is this correct?

This is correct.  Should the home not be occupied, we would require the alarm to be activated.

If the home owner is away for a few days and load shedding causes the alarm system to go off, would this be seen as “impossibility”  and remove blameworthiness on his side should there be a house robbery?

OUTsurance would certainly pay a claim should an alarm not work due to loadshedding.  As always, we are not “technical” in deciding on whether to settle a claim or not.  In an instance where the client had no control over the circumstances, we will settle.

What advice do OUTsurance give to homeowners during times of load shedding with regards to:

1-     Home security and protection from home burglars

Ensure your back up battery on your alarm system is in full working order.  Should the load shedding last only a few hours, the back-up battery may keep the alarm operational for the period.

2-     Prevention of failure of electrical equipment, perishables etc..

Unplug your electronic devices to prevent damage from a surge or dip in electricity once the electricity returns.  It’s of course important to remember to plug your devices once the electricity has returned.

For safety on the road during times of load shedding also view:

Load Shedding and Road Safety

Tips for increased Safety Awareness and Preventing House Robberies

Public advised to vaccinate against influenza

Medication and Safe DrivingPeople are urged to have the influenza vaccine as soon as it becomes available at a pharmacy or healthcare centre.

The National Health Laboratory Service (NHLS) recently announced there was a delay in the availability of the influenza vaccine for 2015. The NHLS stated there was a change in influenza viruses circulating during the 2014 season. As a result, the influenza strains included in the 2015/16 vaccines had to be changed. This resulted in delays in manufacturing and quality control of the 2015 southern hemisphere vaccine globally.

Influenza is a contagious respiratory illness. Influenza can cause mild to severe illness. It can also make chronic health problems worse or lead to pneumonia for example which in turn could lead to death.

Doctor Robyn Holgate, from ER24, urged people to get vaccinated. “It is never too late to vaccinate, even though it may take up to two weeks to develop sufficient protection for the winter months. I am glad the correct strains were included in the vaccination for the coming season, even if it meant the vaccine arriving a little late,” she said.

There are people who say they have in the past been vaccinated but still had influenza and therefore choose not to get vaccinated again. Dr Holgate said the reason why people develop influenza even though they had the vaccine is because they may be infected with one of the strains not included in the current vaccine.

She added the influenza vaccine is usually a preparation against the three most probable strains of the virus for the current flu season. These are an A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)-like virus, an A/Switzerland/9715293/2013(H3N2)-like virus and A B/Phuket/3073/2013-like virus.

Pregnant women, irrespective of the stage of pregnancy, should get vaccinated. Women who are still within their two weeks after delivery should also have the vaccination.

Dr Holgate said a recent trial conducted in South Africa proved the safety of the influenza vaccine for pregnant women. She said pregnant women must have the vaccination as they are high risk for influenza.

Other high-risk groups that must have the vaccine include:

Adults and children who are receiving regular medical care for conditions like chronic pulmonary and cardiac disease, chronic renal diseases, diabetes and similar metabolic disorders. People who are immunosuppressed (including HIV infected people) and those who are morbidly obese (BMI≥40 kg/m2) should also have the vaccine.

Adults and children who come into contact with those who are high-risk. People over the age of 65.

Children between the ages of six months and five years.


Dr Holgate said healthcare workers must also have the vaccination. “Healthcare workers, by the very nature of their work, may be more exposed to viruses than other members of the public. It is vital they ensure their own health by staying healthy, washing their hands and using appropriate barrier protection. The influenza vaccine is one way of ensuring they stay at work during the winter months,” she said.

It is important to note that influenza is different from a cold.

Dr Holgate said the key difference between colds and influenza is the very high temperatures one gets with the associated symptoms of Influenza.

People usually develop influenza suddenly. Symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Headaches
  • Cough
  • Runny or blocked nose
  • Body aches
  • Tiredness


Gastric flu:

Speaking about gastric flu, Dr Holgate said, “Viruses are very common. People may talk about having gastric flu. This may be a virus doing its seasonal rounds which causes gastro type signs and symptoms for example abdominal cramps and diarrhoea. However, it is not one of the influenza viruses,” she said.

ER24’s Emergency Contact Centre can be reached 24 hours a day on 084 124 for any medical emergency.


Chitra Bodasing

ER24 Spokesperson

Also view:

Medicine / Medication and Road Safety

Children awarded at Dream Car Art Contest award ceremony

No Comments »Written on April 20th, 2015 by
Categories: Vehicle
Winner 8-11 category - Priyanka Govender

Winner 8-11 category - Priyanka Govender

Toyota made the dreams of 15 children come true at the Dream Car Art Contest award ceremony held in the Toyota museum in Johannesburg. Full of smiles and talent, the children were treated like royalty at the Toyota head office.

The Toyota Dream Car Art Contest is a platform for Toyota to engage with children in South Africa and around the world through a National and an International Contest.

"This year we celebrate the 9th year of the competition. For the past three years, the competition has truly become a favourite among children in South Africa and around the world. We are proud of the reach of this competition and the talent that we have discovered in the process. South African children are so talented and this competition allows them to not only showcase their talents but challenge their imaginations," says Glenn Crompton, Vice President of Marketing at Toyota South Africa Motors.

The contest is held once a year, with Toyota affiliates around the world conducting a national competition in three age categories namely: under 8 years old, 8 to 11 years old and 12 to 15 years old. The top five contestants win prizes on a national level and the top three are subsequently entered into the international competition which is judged in Japan with Akio Toyoda as the head of the judging jury.

Over the past three years, three South African children have been finalists in the international competition held in Japan.

This year, entry forms were sent to over 200 schools around South Africa as well as all Toyota dealerships with the mandate to mobilise their communities to enter the competition. Over 9000 entries were received, all well designed, intricate and imaginative. Similar to previous years, the 10 to 12 year old category illustrated that their imaginations are very active and there are no limits. The 13 to 15 year old category shows maturity not only in their designs but also in the advanced technology used for efficiency and overall for a better South Africa. The team of judges for the national competition included Toyota South Africa's creative desktop publishing team and the final decision was made by Tiaan van den Heever, from the advertising agency Draft FCB.

The three winners are equally talented but all have very different cars. Elandri du Toit won the under 8 category with her Fairyota, a car that runs on fairy dust and does not disturb nature. Her Fairyota also turns hate into love.

Priyanka Govender won the 8 - 11 year old category with a saviour car which provides water and electricity to those who need it every day.

The winner for the 12 - 15 year old category is Steffan Brundyn. He designed an Intelligent City Commuter Pod (ICCP). The ICCP is a compact, runs on an electric engine and has two driving modes namely City and Travelling modes.

"I would like to congratulate all the winners of the competition and wish them good luck for the international competition. We hope that the competition will reach more children in the future and continue to grow every year." concludes Crompton.

Winner 12-15 category - Steffan Brundyn

Winner 12-15 category - Steffan Brundyn

Winner under 8 category - Elandri du Toit

Winner under 8 category - Elandri du Toit

Safe Second place for defensing champion on Sasol Rally

Castrol rally 1

Defending champions Leeroy Poulter and Elvéne Coetzee drove their Castrol Team Toyota Yaris S2000 to a strong second-place finish in treacherous conditions on the 24th Sasol Rally. The event, which again took place in the area of Mpumalanga around Sabie, Graskop and Nelspruit, was marked by extremely wet and slippery conditions, with the rain bucketing down on day one. Former champions Mark Cronje/Robin Houghton (Ford) won the rally for their second victory of the season.

“We ended day one just a handful of seconds behind Cronje, but the conditions were extremely slippery and it was easy to make mistakes,” said Poulter after completing the rally at the show grounds in Nelspruit. "We eventually decided to settle for second place, rather than taking unnecessary risks."

Poulter started the rally second on the road and managed to steer clear of the worst of the trouble.

"We know what it takes to win a championship," explained Team Principal Glyn Hall after the race. "Leaving here with the points for second place in the bag is much better than throwing caution to the wind and crashing out in the process - especially in conditions like we had in the Lowveld."

Dakar veteran and rally driver Giniel de Villiers, partnered with Carolyn Swan in the second Castrol Team Toyota Yaris, enjoyed a solid performance on the Sasol Rally, until an engine problem forced the team to retire just 25 km from the end of the event. They were running in third place overall at the time, with a healthy buffer to fourth place behind them.

"It was very disappointing to have Giniel and Carolyn retire so close the end of the rally," continued Hall. "We were looking good for two podium places, but in rallying you can't count on anything until the race is over."

In Class S1600, for front-wheel drive cars with engines of 1,600 cc, defending champions Guy Botterill and Simon Vacy-Lyle (Yato Toyota Etios) started strong, but were reduced to spectators when the diff on their race vehicle failed on day one. They rejoined the rally under super rally regulations on day two, but were unable to score meaningful points.

The class was won by Chad van Beurden (Volkswagen) with Paul Franken in a second Volkswagen in second place. Matthew Vacy-Lyle and Schalk van Heerden finished third in their Fragram Toyota Etios.

Next up is the Secunda Motor Rally, which takes place on 15 and 16 May 2015. This is a new event on the national rally calendar, though the area has been used for regional rally events in the past. This will be round three of the eight-round South African National Rally Championship.

Toyota Motorsport South Africa Acknowledges Its Sponsors and Specialist Official Supplier and Technical Partners
Toyota enjoys a mutually beneficial relationship with Castrol, Toyota Financial Services, Innovation Group, Imperial Toyota Group, , Bosch, Donaldson, Edgecam, Ferodo, Smith Manufacturing, 4x4 Mega World, NGK, SKF and Spanjaard.

Follow the fortunes of Castrol Team Toyota on

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sasol rally 2

The #NedbankGreenMile Brings Carnival to the Comrades

#NedbankGreenMile '14-9-medium

Prepare for a Camperdown make-over as the iconic #NedbankGreenMile transforms the grey and dusty streets into a road running celebration on Comrades Day, 31 May.

Nedbank has been a proud major co-sponsor of the "world's ultimate human race" since 2002 bringing fun and flair to the only official spectator point along the route in a grand, enormously entertaining, eco-friendly Green Mile with an electrifying parade of colourful characters, carnival-style floats and more.

Aptly themed ‘Comrades Carnival’ in celebration of the 90th Marathon, the 2015 #NedbankGreenMile is the only official spectator point along the up-run’s 87-km route.

From humble beginnings as a water spot 34 years ago, the #NedbankGreenMile has evolved into an unforgettable, award-winning, inspirational, family-friendly zone where everyone can be part of the Comrades Experience.

Kids and the young at heart will delight in an action-packed Kids Fun Zone, while runners’ supporters will also be able to keep up with the race action from the large grandstand, which will be home to a large screen TV airing live footage and race commentary throughout the day.

A troupe of acrobats, jugglers, stilt walkers, giant puppets, Cancan and Salsa dancers will be parading through the mile-long spectator zone throughout the day, dazzling all in their wake, while local marimba, steel drum and marching bands set the carnival beat. There’ll also be DJs; flamboyant floats; a ‘kissing’ booth; shoot the hoop recycle bins; and a secure kids zone with a jumping castle, face painting, arts and crafts and puppets; plus many more surprises.

In Nedbank’s commitment to supporting the local community, all proceeds from food and beverage sales along the #NedbankGreenMile will go to local schools, charities and churches. There will also be an interactive recycling programme in place throughout the spectator zone.

So ignite your imagination, dress the part and come be part of the Comrades Carnival at this year’s #NedbankGreenMile, which will be open from 08h00 – 14h30 on race day, with free entry.  An easy access car park next to the N3 / race route with parking directional signage will be provided.

#NedbankGreenMile event details:

Date: 31 May 2015

Time: 8h00 to 14h30

Entry cost: Free

GPS co-ordinates: S 29º 43’ 38.28”, E 30º 32’ 25.44

Also view:

Running / Jogging and Road Safety


Jeep Team’s Thomas Van Tonder Tames the Savage Beast Obstacle Course Race

No Comments »Written on April 15th, 2015 by
Categories: Medical


An action-packed weekend past for Jeep Team’s OCR athletes saw Thomas van Tonder tame the inaugural ‘Savage Beast obstacle course race’ on Saturday (11 April), claiming top podium in a time of 1h5m2s, one second ahead of Eduan Neeb (1h5m3s), with Willem Erasmus in third (1h5m4s), also just one second ahead of Neeb.

The Beast is South Africa’s newest OCR series that took place at the picturesque Amanzingwe Lodge in Broederstroom, North West Province. The race offered a range of events to suit all fitness levels, including the elite-category Savage Beast, consisting of 30 obstacles over approximately 15km.

Said Van Tonder, “We were about 50 athletes in the Elite start, eager to take on the misty morning hills, not knowing what to expect. The terrain was technical and made for some great trail running, but the obstacles were not as challenging as the Jeep Warrior races.

“I managed to take the win at the end but more importantly enjoyed a good day out with fellow OCR athletes and it’s great to see the sport growing with another OCR event.”

Jeep Team’s Claudia Richard just missed the podium coming 4th in the Women 10-km Wild Beast event. On Sunday, she also placed 3rd in Kinetic Gear’s 25-km Adventure Race, which took place in Fourways, Johannesburg.

In Cape Town, the team’s other OCR warriors - Dominique D’Oliveira and Jay Jay Deysel – competed in Race#2 of the Impi Challenge.

D’Oliveira fought hard for a 3rd place finish in 2h15m1s, only minutes behind Trish Bahlmann in 1st (2h5m1s) and Hanneke Dannhauser in 2nd (2h13m). Deysel placed 10th in the competitive Men’s Elite race.

Track & Field

In Bloemfontein, Jeep Team’s Mikaela Jonsson competed against the country’s future champions at the South African Sub-youth, Youth, Junior and U23 Track & Field Championships. Jonsson achieved a 5th place finish racing for the first time in the Junior Women’s 800m event.


In Gauteng, Jeep Team’s MTB athlete, Thinus Redelinghuys, raced to a 3rd place finish at Event #3 of the USN MTB Cup series, which took place at the Avianto Sports Grounds on Saturday. Redelinghuys finished the 50-km race in 1h55m31s, behind Guylin Van den Berg (1h53m18s) and Alan Gordon (1h54m5s).

On Sunday, Jeep Team’s Alex Dolman (15) earned a 2nd place in the Elite finals of the Germiston BMX Club Points Meeting.

Also view:

Endurance Sports, Driver Fatigue and Road Safety

Arrests made and 10 stolen cars recovered at Soweto scrapyard




Gauteng SAPS Flying Squad received information about stolen cars in a scrap yard at Midway, Soweto.

When police members arrived, 10 cars were identified as stolen from as far as Klerksdorp and other areas around Gauteng.

Two suspects were arrested and more arrests are expected.

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Crime as a Threat to Road Safety



Is your child intentionally cutting themselves? What do I need to know?

Trauma Councelling

After recent news that Zayn Malik left One Direction #CutforZayn and #CuttingForZayn were trending on social media.

A number of fans began cutting themselves and sharing images of it on social media.

This shocked people across the world and led to people voicing their anger, sadness and concern. Others either ridiculed these fans or urged them not to “joke about self-harm”.

Among these people were also those who could not understand why children self-harm in general or why teenagers would resort to self-harm over a band member leaving.

Henning Jacobs, trauma support co-ordinator at ER24, said cutting is not a new occurrence.

Parents need to be aware that children could possibly be cutting themselves.

“Teenagers have been cutting themselves with blades or knives for the past 10 years. After working with many teenagers who had a cutting problem I have come across two conclusions. The one conclusion is that there are some teenagers who cut to get attention and be ‘in with the crowd’.  These are insecure teenagers who need some attention and acceptance.

“The second group however is what could be described as the real cutters. Cutting is an addiction. Some teenagers become addicted to the feeling of cutting and the sensation of pain. When we speak to these teenagers we find they have some form of trauma or depression in their lives,” said Jacobs.

This trauma or depression can be a result of a number of issues such as divorce of parents, not being accepted by parents or the death of a loved one for example.

Jacobs said these teenagers cut themselves because they cannot deal with the internal pain and heartache they undergo.

“These teenagers will tell you that the physical pain they experience from the cutting helps them forget about the internal pain they feel in their hearts. They say it is much easier to deal with physical pain than emotional pain. These teenagers normally do not get any support from their parents on how to deal with emotional pain. There is usually some form of family dysfunction present. You seldom find teenagers that grow up in a healthy and loving home who would cut themselves intentionally,” said Jacobs.

Speaking about the call for self-harm due to Zayn Malik leaving One Direction, Jacobs said someone could have started this craze out of hatred or anger, but is most likely an addicted cutter.

“The problem with a craze like this is that it might pressurise non-cutters to start cutting themselves just to fit in with the crowd or friendship group. Other teenagers however become so involved with a group like One Direction that they believe they have a personal friendship with them,” said Jacobs.

Many troubled teens find their identity and acceptance from groups like these and build their whole existence around this.

Teenagers take the “break-up” so seriously and personally and feel as though the band member has left them.

“This will in turn cause real emotional pain. They then resort to cutting themselves,” said Jacobs.


Jacobs said parents play a vital role in the lives of children. If a parent discovers their child is cutting themselves it is vital they help the child immediately.

It is easy to find out if your child cuts his or her self intentionally. Marks will be left behind.

If your child is always wearing long sleeves or long pants, even throughout summer, they might be cutting themselves.

“If you find out your child is cutting themselves do not burst out in anger. This will make the situation worse.

“Reach out with a helping hand and love. The first step is to determine whether your child is cutting due to group and friendship pressure or if they are addicted to cutting.

“If they are simply cutting because of group pressure then parents can help the child through support, love and guidance. However if the child is a cutter or addicted to cutting due to trauma or depression, parents must seek the help of an educational psychologist,” said Jacobs.

ER24’s Emergency Contact Centre can be reached 24 hours a day on 084 124 for any medical emergency.

Chitra Bodasing

ER24 spokesperson

Also view:

Trauma Counseling and Road Safety

Pietermaritzburg paramedic training for Comrades Marathon, again

Scelo with his Two Oceans Marathon medal

Scelo with his Two Oceans Marathon medal

Scelo Thusi, one of our paramedics at KZN Emergency Medical Services, is based in Pietermaritzburg at the Greys base. He is a stride ahead of the rest of his colleagues, literally. In the last few weeks he has run the Buff Marathon in East London. He completed the 42km run in a time of 3h58m he has also recently completed the Two Oceans Marathon, despite suffering from cramps during the race.

Scelo started running in 2009, he used to play soccer but says he kept on sustaining injuries, which would see him side lined. After chatting to some of his work colleagues he decided to take up running. His first run was in 2009 in the “Postnet Maritzburg Marathon” where he ran the 21km event in 2 hours. From there he started entering more and bigger events. Then in 2013 he ran his first comrades marathon and finished it in a time of 10h20m. He ran the down run in 2014 and finished with a time of 11h15m. He is currently training to run this year’s race.

Scelo is a paramedic at KZN Emergency Medical Services. He started working for the department 10 years ago and is currently based at the Greys hospital base, which serves the Pietermaritzburg central and the surrounding areas. He is married and has a 16 year old daughter. He trains mostly on his off days, but even when he is working day shift, this doesn’t stop him from training. He wakes up at 04h30 and trains for an hour before going to work and has even been known to run to work in the mornings.

He says keeping fit helps him to stay healthy and helps him to deal with the stresses associated with being a paramedic. His desperate plea to his work colleagues is that they should start exercising, to improve their health.

For more information and sound clips or interviews please contact

Robert Mckenzie
Media Liaison Officer: Emergency Medical Services
KwaZulu - Natal Department of Health- South Africa

Also view:

Running / Jogging and Road Safety