Kranshoek Knysna and Victoria Bay – Thursday, 22nd March, 2012.
At 10h31 on Thursday 22nd March NSRI Knysna sea rescue duty crew were called out following a request for assistance from the SA Police Force who were searching for two people suspected to be missing on the Harkerville Trail at Kranshoek – a rocky cliff trail.
Our Knysna duty crew launched Colorpress Rescuer and JT III and our sea rescue vehicle responded.
A Metro EMS and our sea rescue vehicle joined Police on the land side of the trail.
On arrival our rescue volunteers began a search along the cliff face along the shore and the missing couple, Werner van der Merwe, 30, and Alet Trigaardt, 30, both from Somerset East, were spotted high up on the cliff face of Kranshoek.
Our volunteers were put ashore with rescue equipment and they hiked and climbed up to the couple, taking over an hour to reach them, and found them to both be suffering from dehydration. The two had hiked the trail since the day before until they had reached an area where they could not progress any further.
The couple were stabilized by NSRI medics but it was evident that they were not in good enough shape to climb up or down from their position.
The Metro EMS rescue helicopter was called and on arrival the helicopter managed to land on a convenient ridge and the couple were put onboard. They were flown to a nearby EMS ambulance where they were further assessed by paramedics.
NSRI then drove them to where their car was parked and they have gone off on their way to continue their holiday.
While returning from this call-out, at 13h47, NSRI Knysna were called again following reports of a man suffering chest pain at the Easthead Coffee shop.
Our returning boats sped to that scene where NSRI medics stabilized 79 year old Otto Vermier, from Tiel, Netherlands, who complained of a tight chest and chest pains, said Graeme.
An ER-24 ambulance was summoned and the man has been transported to hospital in a stable condition for further treatment and observation.
At 14h30 NSRI Wilderness volunteers were called out for a drowning in progress at Victoria Bay.
NSRI Wilderness rescue swimmers and ER-24 ambulance services and WC Government Health: EMS all responded.
On arrival paramedics treated a 17 year old man, from the local Thembalethu settlement, who was found on the beach after being rescued from the surf by two bystanders.
The youngster had gotten into difficulty while swimming with a group of friends and had then been rescue from the water by two bystanders, Michele Casati and Ignus Bezuidenhout.
Ignus, an ex NSRI Wilderness volunteer said that he had been on the beach with his family when beach goers raised the alarm that one of the youngsters in a group of swimmers was being swept out to sea in a rip current.
He and another bystander, Michele, swam after the teenager. Together they swam him back to the beach.
Ignus then used his NSRI medical training to stabilize the youngster who was suffering exhaustion, hypothermia and near drowning symptoms, until paramedics took over. The patient has been transported to hospital in a stable condition by ambulance.