At 16h30, Saturday, 19th November, NSRI Witsand duty crew were activated following a request for medical assistance at Anchorage main swimming beach, Witsand, where an 18 year old male, believed to be a matriculant from Cape Town, had been stung by blue bottles while swimming with friends.
NSRI Witsand medics responded to the scene while the WC Government Health EMS dispatched an ambulance.
On arrival on the scene the 18 year old male was found on the beach in a serious condition and he was treated for an allergic reaction to blue bottle stings.
A doctor, driving past the scene at the time, stopped to assist and the patient was handed into the care of EMS paramedics and transported to hospital in a stable condition.
At 18h30, Saturday, 19th November, NSRI Hartbeespoort Dam duty crew launched the rescue craft Afrox Rescuer II following reports of a passanger ferry, the Harties Party Boat, a pleasure boat, suffering motor mechanical failure to one of her motors on the Southern side of Hartbeespoort Dam with 80 people onboard and during an approaching storm.
A Police Water Unit boat also responded.
On arrival on the scene NSRI and Police were met by anxious passengers fearing for their safety.
It was agreed that it was safer for the passengers to stay onboard the ferry during the storm despite other boats, private boats, arriving on the scene to assist. The passengers and crew were safe on the ferry and NSRI and Police stood by to assist if necessary.
The skipper and owners of the ferry had made sure that all passengers were wearing their life-jackets although some passengers blatantly refused to put on life-jackets (despite the advice to put on their life-jackets) the skipper made sure that they had easy access to life-jackets.
A Police negotiator boarded the ferry with NSRI to reassure passengers who were growing anxious and it was agreed that they remained safe onboard the ferry.
The storm passed and the ferry got underway on her remaining motor but after the second motor sustained mechanical failure NSRI took two pregnant ladies, both passengers, to shore safely. They were anxious and it was decided to get them to shore.
NSRI then rigged a tow line and towed the ferry to her mooring and all passengers disembarked safely and no further assistance was required.
The operation completed at 00h30.
HARTBEESPOORT DAM FERRY DISASTER – SATURDAY, 19th NOVEMBER:
NSRI have extended sincerest condolences to family and friends of the 4 woman who died in Saturdays ferry fire on Hartbeespoort Dam.
We commend the local private boats that responded to assist passengers and crew of the casualty ferry. Your quick actions saved lives.
NSRI are urging anyone on any boat or craft on inland waters and on coastal waters to wear life-jackets at all times while on the water.
On Saturday, 19th November, at 19h30, NSRI Durban duty crew dispatched the sea rescue craft Megan II to Tinlie Manor, 20 nautical miles North of Durban, where a 5 meter Catamaran ski-boat Wild Heart capsized from unknown causes with 2 local men onboard.
Local emergency services also responded and the NSRI Duran sea rescue craft Eikos Rescuer II was launched.
On arrival on the scene Ballito Specialised Rescue found that one of the men had swum ashore safely and he was not injured.
The skipper remained with the upturned hull of the boat about 500 meters off-shore and Ballito Specialised Rescue dispatched a jet-ski and they were able to right the boat.
NSRI Durban arrived on the scene and took the casualty boat under tow while the skipper was taken safely ashore by Ballito Specialised Rescue jet-ski.
The NSRI sea rescue craft Megan II towed the casualty boat towards Durban’s Port and on the arrival of the NSRI deep-sea rescue craft Eikos rescuer II the tow-line was transferred to Eikos Rescuer II and the casualty boat was towed safely to the Port of Durban and recovered at the public slip-way and handed to the skipper who had arrived by vehicle and no further assistance was required.