GEORGE NEWS - The search for Heidi Scheepers (35) and her two children, Cozette (6) and Hugo (2), who disappeared on Tuesday, yesterday led police and rescue services to Voëlklip near Herold's Bay (just outside George).
This after police were alerted to tyre tracks going off the notorious cliff at the lookout point.
By late afternoon yesterday only a few clues had emerged as to what could have happened to the young woman and her children.
A broken windscreen of a Volkswagen vehicle, a shoe and other clothing were seen floating just below Voëlklip in the sea. However, no vehicle was spotted and divers could not be deployed due to rough seas. By 18:00 on Wednesday the rescue effort was postponed to 05:30 this morning as high tide and white foam on the water caused poor visibility.
The family members went missing on Tuesday 22 October after a quick visit to Herold's Bay beach. They were last seen at around 18:00. Heidi's husband, Ettienne, later put out an alert on WhatsApp when his family did not show up at home as expected. The Scheepers family stay in Oubaai and, according to Facebook, own a property business and shop in Herold's Bay.
In his WhatsApp message Ettienne said he and his family had gone down to the beach in their charcoal Volkswagen Caravelle on Tuesday to fetch his car which was parked nearby. He said that his wife and children had not returned home after their visit to the beach. He asked everyone to be on the lookout for his family and the Caravelle. In the WhatsApp, which soon went viral, he said he had reported their disappearance to the police.
Police confirmed that he made the missing persons report at around 20:00.
When George Herald spoke to Ettienne on Wednesday, he was very emotional, but appreciative of the newspaper assisting in the search for his family.
Appeal to social media users
Yesterday afternoon the police issued an urgent appeal to social media users and the public in general to refrain from posting or spreading any rumours relating to the incident.
Capt Malcolm Pojie, the Southern Cape police spokesperson, called on the public to consider the family's feelings and emotions during this difficult time. "We will issue an official statement regarding their disappearance as soon as possible. I urge people not to post unconfirmed information online," said Pojie.
At the time of going to print last night no official statement from the police had been received.
Pojie confirmed that the rescue effort will be resumed at the first light of day.
Read previous articles:
- Soektog na ma en kinders gaan voort
- Urgent appeal from police
- Ma en kinders steeds vermis
- Mother and children missing
'We bring you the latest Garden Route, Karoo, Hessequa news'