The Pookie mine detection vehicle proved highly effective at finding landmines during the Rhodesian Bush War in the 1970s
‘Between 1976 and the end of the counter-insurgency war in 1980, Pookies found over 550 landmines but never detonated a single one’
Acivilian Land Rover travelling at night in northeast Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in late August 1973 detonated a Soviet TM-46 anti-tank mine with the right front wheel. Miraculously, driver Dave Ward, his wife Margie and their two children survived the devastating blast but, apart from Margie, the others were either unconscious or semi-conscious. Fearing for the lives of her family in the event of insurgents arriving at the scene, she dragged them clear of the wreckage and into the bush at the side of the road to wait out the night. They were discovered alive the following morning by a schoolboy. Tragically, the valiant Margie died of severe internal injuries two days later in hospital.