At 12h20, Sunday, 25th January, NSRI Wilderness launched SPIRIT OF ROTARY 100 and OSCARS RESCUER and a sea rescue vehicle responded to Gwaing river mouth, 20km West of Wilderness, to an unprotected beach following reports of a drowning in progress with reportedly 2 people being swept out to sea.
The Red Cross AMS Skymed rescue helicopter, the SA Police Services and WC Government Health EMS responded.
On arrival on-scene it was found that one man, unidentified, had managed to get out of the water but he had left the scene and during a search the Skymed rescue helicopter located the body of a man floating in the surf.
An NSRI rescue swimmer was deployed from the helicopter into the surf and the body of the man was secured and then hoisted to shore where paramedics declared the body of a man, believed to be from George, aged approximately 31, deceased.
The body of the man has been taken into the care of the Forensic Pathology Services and Police have opened an inquest docket.
At 18h50, Sunday, 25th January, NSRI Knysna duty crew launched the sea rescue craft JAYTEE III following concerns by an NSRI Knysna crewman, at Brenton on Sea, witnessing two SUP (stand up paddleboarders) appearing to not be making any headway about a nautical mile off-shore between Three Sisters and Castle Rock, Brenton On Sea.
With fading light the two SUP’s seemed to change their direction (they appeared to be heading towards Knysna) but had now seemed to turn around heading back towards Buffels Bay and were occasionally sitting down on their SUP’s.
On arrival on-scene NSRI found the two men, on 2 SUP’s, a 32 year old Johannesburg man and a 34 year old Sedgefield man, to be tired and considering their options as to whether to head towards Knysna or turn around and go back to Buffels Bay (where they had originally launched from) but in fading light they had realised that either way they were going to get to wherever they decided to go well after dark and already tired they also faced exhaustion.
They had only on their baggy shorts, a lighter and cigarettes with them.
They could not head directly to shore where the rocky shore front in a 2 meter shore break swell posed a risk.
NSRI took both men and their SUP’s onto the sea rescue craft and took them both to Knysna without incident and once safely in Knysna they required no further assistance.
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