Three teens rescued from freezing to death in snow

Three teenage boys came close to freezing to death when they were trapped in a cave overnight by snow up to a metre thick.

Snow has blanketed the Eastern Cape high ground, causing havoc on roads and with emergency services.

Fourteen passes were closed, including all major roads in the north-east of the province.

There was one weather-related pedestrian death reported to the authorities.

The SA Weather Service broadcast safety warnings wide on Friday.

Many residents stayed at home and tried to keep warm as snow fell, rain bucketed down and winds reached gale-force strength.

In Mount Fletcher, police yesterday rescued the three teenagers who, on Sunday afternoon, were caught in the open by a blizzard with kilometres to go between Thembeni and Gxaku villages.

Temperatures dropped to -3°C in some areas.