John Costello, NSRI Port St Johns station commander, said: “At approximately 14h00 (Sunday, 16th June) NSRI Port St Johns volunteer sea rescue duty crew were activated following reports of a canoe capsized on the Mzimvubu River Mouth, Port St Johns, with an adult male reported to be missing.
“It appears that an employee from a local guest lodge, a man believed to be aged in his mid thirties, had taken a guest of the hotel, a female from Durban, to the river mouth to go paddling on Indian Canoes. While paddling on a canoe, a canoe that the man was on, the canoe capsized and according to eye-witnesses the man disappeared under water.
“The female hotel guest had tried to go to his assistance on the canoe that she was on but in the swells of the river mouth she aborted the efforts and returned safely to shore.
“It is reported that the man was not wearing a life-jacket.
“Our NSRI Port St Johns volunteer sea rescue duty crew responded aboard NSRI Port St Johns volunteer Rob Nettleton’s dive charter boat, from Off-shore Africa Dive Charters, and despite an extensive search no sign of the missing man has been found and only the canoe and the oar have been located and recovered.
“It is feared that the man has drowned.
“A Police dive unit and a Police K-9 dog search and rescue unit have been activated and they will continue a search from Monday morning.
“Police are to open an inquest docket. Family of the missing man have not been able to be traced as yet.”