At 10h40, Thursday, 26th June, NSRI Airborne Sea Rescue (NSRI ASR) volunteer sea rescue duty crew were activated by the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) to prepare to respond to evacuate a crewmen, a South Korean, aged 33, suffering a suspected Stroke onboard the 322 meter bulk carrier, MV STELLAR DAISY, fully laden, sailing from Brazil to South Korea, following a request for urgent medical assistance from the ship.
It appears that the sailor presented with signs of a CVA (Cerebro Vascular Accident – Stroke) yesterday afternoon deep sea off the South African coast. Cape Town doctors were informed by the ships agent and the case was escalated to MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre) and a WC Government Health EMS duty doctor evaluated the case and it was authorised for the patient to be evacuated to hospital as soon as possible.
The ship was instructed to head towards Cape Town.
Telkom Maritime Radio Services assisted with VHF radio communications between rescue authorities and the ship.
TNPA activated the NSRI ASR and WC Government Health EMS and The SA Air Force (SAAF) 22 Squadron at Air Force Base (AFB) Ysterplaat were activated.
A SAAF 22 Squadron Oryx helicopter made ready while Metro Control dispatched an EMS doctor and an EMS rescue paramedic and NSRI ASR rescue swimmers were dispatched to AFB Ysterplaat.
NSRI Hout Bay and NSRI Table Bay were placed on alert to be on stand-by while the rescue operation progressed.
At 13h15 a SAAF 22 Squadron Oryx helicopter, with two SAAF pilots and two SAAF flight engineers and accompanied by NSRI ASR rescue swimmers, an EMS doctor and an EMS rescue paramedic lifted off from AFB Ysterplaat and rendezvoused with the ship 50 nautical miles off-shore of Kommetjie.
On arrival on-scene, in rough seas with a 25 knot North Westerly wind and 3 to 4 meter swell, EMS rescue paramedic Antoinette Burrows and NSRI ASR rescue swimmer Marc de Vos were winch hoisted onto the ships deck from the helicopter where they found the patient to be in a stable condition. Showing signs of a stroke, he was in the care of their ships medic. The patient was medically stabilised and secured into a specialised hoisting stretcher (Medivac Stretcher) and winch hoisted into the helicopter with the EMS rescue paramedic followed by the NSRI ASR rescue swimmer and medical treatment continued in the helicopter.
The patient was airlifted to AFB Ysterplaat, arriving at 14h33, and has been transported in a stable condition by an ER24 ambulance to The Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital where doctors are continuing with medical treatment.