The family member added that Grobler “did all the right things” but the “accident was unavoidable”.
“When he hit the two kids, the one girl was stuck under the bakkie in the mud. If Louis had kept trying to spin the vehicle to get loose, her injuries would have been much more severe. He immediately called for a tractor as well as emergency services to assist.”
They then used the tractor to pull the bakkie off the 10-year-old girl, whose leg was broken by the impact. Ambulances transported her and her friends to hospital.
Less than a kilometre away from the scene is the small informal village where the children and their families live.
The father of the 10-year-old girl said they were under the impression the field had been harvested, meaning it was permissible to take what was left.
“They went there on Friday at about 2pm to pick mielies still left in the field after the harvesting was done,” the father, 38, told TimesLIVE.
He said they don’t know how Grobler knew the children were there.