Pearson High School pupils were lucky to escape with minor injuries after the school bus in which they were travelling crashed into three cattle.
Two of the animals died on the scene of the accident on the R72 near Winterstrand outside East London on Thursday night.
The Port Elizabeth school’s water polo team had been travelling to East London to play against Selborne College when the accident happened at about 9pm.
Fifteen pupils were treated on the scene after sustaining minor injuries.
The accident, which brought traffic to a standstill for several hours, created a feeding frenzy after community members allegedly hacked the cows to take the meat.
Police are alleged to have been part of the looting spree – an allegation that Mdantsane police spokesman Captain Nkosikho Mzuku said they would investigate.
According to a witness and former policeman, Hein Johnson of Winterstrand, the stray animals had been lying on the warm tar because it had been a chilly evening.
“We have been engaging with the nearby farmer as the community for a long time to try and force him to make sure his cattle don’t get out of his farm and end up on the road.
“Of course he denied that the cattle that caused the accident are his.”
Johnson said the particular farmer’s livestock were unmarked which made it easy for him to escape responsibility.
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