Deon Langenhoven, NSRI Hermanus station commander, said:
At 15h58, Saturday, 24th December, NSRI Hermanus duty crew were activated following an eye-witness report of a man appearing to be in difficulty on a tyre tube, drifting about 50 meters off-shore and in the wave line but appearing to be unable to get to shore.
We dispatched our sea rescue vehicle towing our sea rescue craft to the scene and on arrival we initiated a search from the shoreline but on investigation we found that the man had abandoned the tube at sea and he had swum ashore and no further assistance was required.
Geoff McGregor, NSRI East London station commander, said:
At around 10h34, Saturday 24th December, NSRI East London duty crew dispatched our sea rescue craft Spirit of Lotto following a request for assistance from a Canadian yacht Sara M, with a man and a woman onboard, requesting assistance to get into Port.
Their last Port of call was Port Louis, Mauritius.
On arrival on the scene a tow-line was rigged and in rough seas with a 5 meter swell and a 55 knot gale force wind we towed the 20 meter yacht into Port without incident and they required no further assistance.
Rieghard Janse van rensburg, NSRI Jeffreys Bay station commander, said:
At 10h45, Saturday, 24th December, we were alerted following reports that a paddler may be missing during a paddle between St Francis Bay and Jeffreys Bay.
Family reportedly had visuals on one of the two paddlers but the second paddler was nowhere to be seen and they raised the alarm.
We dispatched our sea rescue Quad bike, the sea rescue craft Eddie Beaumont II and Project Rescuer. One of our sea rescue crew, a pilot, borrowed an aircraft to join in the search.
We found the one paddler on the beach near to Albatros, a 40 year old local man, but his friend, a 53 year old man from Kommetjie, Cape Town, who now lives in Hawaai, was missing and although we had cellphone contact with the man, in very strong off-shore gale force winds, it was difficult to pinpoint his position.
At approximately 12h30 we found the man on the Port Elizabeth side at the Gamtoos River Mouth where he had beached, 3 kilometers away from the original search area and he was suffering exhaustion and hypothermia.
While medical treatment commenced he was taken onboard our sea rescue craft and brought to the Jeffreys Bay side of the Gamtoos River Mouth where with the assistance of the Papiesfontein Horse Riding outfit, allowing us access and guiding us, we were able to reach the area by vehicle and we transported him in our sea rescue vehicle to a waiting EC Government Health EMS ambulance and he was transported to hospital in the care of EMS paramedics and in a stable condition suffering from exhaustion and hypothermia.
NSRI are urging boaters and paddlers to download the NSRI free “app” Safetrx.
Found on the NSRI web page at www.nsri.org.za the RSA Safetrx App is a free cellphone app that is used to help us to easily and immediately know that you are in trouble and in need of sea rescue and gives us your exact location, amongst other uses.