UPDATE 2: SEA RESCUE GORDONS BAY. Sunday, 29th November, 2015:
During an ongoing search operation today, for the fisherman who has been missing since last night after a fishing boat capsized off Gordons Bay, the upturned hull of the fishing boat was located drifting off Macassar and semi-submerged.
A private boat had come across the drifting capsized casualty boat and they led the search party to the location off Macassar Beach.
NSRI rescue swimmers were deployed to investigate underneath the upturned hull and the body of the missing fisherman was located trapped in lines.
A Police Dive team assisted by Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services divers were summoned to the scene. They scuba-dived underneath the capsized hull and freed the entrapped body and recovered it onto a sea rescue craft and brought to Gordons Bay Sea Rescue base. The deceased has been handed into the care of the Department of Health Forensic Pathology Services.
The family and colleagues of the fisherman were informed and they are in the care of Police and Police trauma counsellors.
All of the emergency services that responded and assisted in this extensive operation are commended for their efforts.
The Emergency Services have expressed sincerest condolences to the families and colleagues of the two deceased fishermen.
A Police helicopter, NSRI Gordons Bay, NSRI Simonstown, NSRI Strandfontein, a Police Dive Unit, WSAR (Wilderness Search and Rescue), Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services dive unit and local Police and Law Enforcement are continuing an ongoing search between the Wolfgat Nature Reserve and Gordons Bay for a fisherman who went missing last night after their boat capsized off Harbour island, Gordons Bay.
See original media release below…
Edward Russouw, NSRI Gordons Bay deputy station commander, said: At 21h22, Saturday, 28th November, NSRI Gordons Bay were activated by the Transnet National Ports Authority following reports of red distress flares fired off Harbour Island, Gordons Bay.
NSRI Gordons Bay launched the sea rescue craft Spirit of Surfski II. The SA Police Services and Gordons Bay Security private ambulance services responded to stand-by at NSRI Gordons Bay sea rescue base.
A sea search commenced in a gale force South Easterly on-shore wind when, during a search, a torch light was spotted flashing in the distance and on arrival on the scene, ¾ of a nautical mile off-shore of Harbour Island, the crew aboard the sea rescue craft located a capsized Snoek fishing boat with 3 men clinging onto the upturned hull and they were holding onto the body of a 4th man.
The body of the deceased man and the 3 fishermen were recovered onto the sea rescue craft and brought to shore. Paramedics treated the 3 survivors for hypothermia (they did not require hospitalisation) and the body of the deceased fisherman was taken into the care of Police and the Department of Health Forensic Pathology Services.
The survivors confirmed that a 5th fisherman, wearing a life-jacket, had drifted away from the upturned boat in the strong winds.
A shoreline search commenced in the hopes that the missing fisherman would be swept ashore in the strong winds and the WC Government Health EMS rescue squad, Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services, Law Enforcement Marine Unit and the City of Cape Town Disaster Risk Management Operations responded with lighting vehicles and extra personnel to assist in a shoreline search and to light up the shoreline.
Taking the position of the capsized craft, wind speed and direction and the drift of the currents an area was identified as the most probable area where the fisherman may wash ashore. Shallow water depth was not conducive for a boat search in the vicinity and the area was combed extensively together with other areas to rule out all possibilities.
The extensive shoreline search included emergency services using tactical lighting equipment and tactical vehicles to illuminate the shore front while rescuers searched along the shoreline in amongst rocks and shallow surf.
A Police Dive Unit were placed on alert.
Family of the fishermen arrived at the sea rescue base and Police arranged their Police trauma counselors who took care of the families and of the survivors.
A Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services Pastor joined the trauma briefing to assist Police trauma counselors with families and the survivors.
The surviving fishermen have confirmed that they had been returning from a day fishing and it is suspected that the strong winds contributed to their boat capsizing.
They are all from the Strand and they are all close friends.
Despite an extensive search no sign of the missing fisherman has been found.
A Police Dive team are alerted and NSRI Gordons Bay are continuing in an ongoing search for the missing fisherman.
The capsized boat remains adrift semi submerged.
Police have opened an inquest docket.
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