At 12h10, Tuesday, 02 February, NSRI Hout Bay duty crew launched the sea rescue craft Nadine Gordimer to respond to 60 nautical miles South West of Kommetjie following a request for assistance made by a lone sailor aboard the 26 foot Still Bay yacht “Elbow Grease”.
The 57 year old man, from Stillbaai, and sailing from Still Bay to Cape Town, reported to MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordinaton Centre) that his yachts rudder was damaged and he had run out of diesel. Despite his best attempts to rig jury sails and to try to get his yacht underway, in rough seas of 4 to 5 meter swells and gusting 35 knot South Easterly winds, he had requested assistance.
NSRI Hout Bay reached the yacht 72 nautical miles off-shore and found the man exhausted and adrift at sea on his yacht.
Attempts were made to tow the yacht but efforts were hampered by the rough seas and by the small yachts buoyancy and the towing effort was considered to be too dangerous to both the casualty yacht crewman and to the rescue crew. Despite sea drogues deployed to try to aid the tow effort and despite extensive efforts to try to get the yacht under tow the effort was aborted for safety.
The exhausted lone sailor gathered what personal items he could from his yacht and he abandoned his yacht at sea and he was taken aboard the sea rescue craft and brought to shore, arriving at 03h30, where family collected him from the sea rescue base. He was not injured.
Telkom Maritime Radio Services are broadcasting a maritime navigational warning to ships passing the last known position of the yacht warning of the maritime navigational hazard.
It is not known if the sailor plans to make salvage efforts to attempt to recover his yacht adrift at sea.
At 14h00, Tuesday, 02 February, NSRI Plettenberg Bay duty crew were activated following eye-witness reports of a man on a Hobie Cat in difficulty 1.5 nautical miles off-shore of Robberg Point, Plettenberg Bay.
The sea rescue craft Ray Farnham was launched and on arrival on the scene an 82 year old local man was found on a damaged Hobie Cat. He was not injured.
The man was taken aboard our sea rescue craft and brought safely to shore and his Hobie Cat, with a hole in one side, was towed to shore.
It appears that the local 82 year old man and his friend, a 75 year old local man, were sailing on two Hobie Cats together when the friend’s Hobie Cat side swiped his Hobie Cat leaving a hole in one side. The friend had sailed to shore to raise the alarm while the 82 year old tried his best to sail his damaged craft to shore when NSRI Plettenberg Bay arrived on the scene and rescued him.
Once safely ashore no further assistance was required.
NSRI Melkbosstrand duty crew launched a sea rescue craft at 12h40, on Tuesday, 02 February, following multiple eye-witness reports of a man in difficulty on a kite-board a nautical mile off-shore of Bloubergstrand.
The AMS/EMS Skymed rescue helicopter was also activated.
On arrival on the scene NSRI Melkbosstrand found that the man had drifted to rocks and had managed to get onto the rocks and he was taken onboard the sea rescue craft and brought safely to shore.
At 14h00, Tuesday, 02 February, NSRI Shelly Beach duty crew were activated following reports of two children, a male and a female, aged between 15 and 17, from Izotcha, were being swept out to sea by rip currents.
A school group were at the beach when two of the learners were swept out to sea while swimming.
An NSRI rescue swimmer, nearby to the scene at the time, responded while the duty crew responded to the base to prepared to launch a sea rescue craft.
The NSRI Shelly Beach rescue swimmer and a bystander swam out to the two teenagers and were able to bring them back to shore.
They were treated for non fatal drowning symptoms and both were transported to hospital by Hibiscus Medivac ambulance and both were in stable conditions and expected to fully recover.
The rescue swimmer and the bystander are commended for their efforts.
At 06h36, Wednesday, 03 February, NSRI Table Bay duty crew were activated following eye-witness reports of two men on a double sea kayak in difficulty off-shore of Mouille Point Lighthouse. NSRI Table Bay launched a sea rescue craft while NSRI shore crew responded to the scene. WC Government Health EMS and ER24 ambulance services were activated.
It appears that the double sea kayak may have capsized and one man was witnessed to be in the water hanging onto the sea kayak while the second man attempted to paddle the sea kayak to shore.
The NSRI Table Bay sea rescue craft arrived on the scene and both men were rescued and their kayak was taken under tow.
The two men, from Cape Town, aged 48 and 54, were brought to shore to the Oceana Power Boat Club where once safely ashore they required no further assistance.