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JEFFREYS BAY:Rieghard Janse van Rensburg, NSRI Jeffreys Bay station commander, said:At 16h22, Friday, 30th December, NSRI Jeffreys Bay duty crew responded following eye-witness reports suspecting a surfer lying motionless on his surf-board off-shore of Magna Tubes, Jeffreys Bay, a popular surf spot.On our arrival on the shoreline and observing through binoculars what looked like a surfer unconscious on his surf-board was observed and our sea rescue craft was launched but on the sea rescue craft reaching the site we found a seal that appeared to have been dead for quite some time.The dead seal just happened to look like a surfer lying motionless on a surfboard.It is not known what lead to the seals fate.The carcass of the seal was brought to shore and Bayworld were alerted and they will remove the carcass from the shore.Ernie Schmidt, NSRI Jeffreys Bay deputy station commander, said:At 14h45, Saturday, 31st December, NSRI Jeffreys Bay duty crew responded in the sea rescue vehicle to the Gamtoos River Mouth following reports from Private Care ambulance services of a drowning in progress.On arrival on the scene a 7 year old girl from Thornhill was found safely ashore after being rescued from the water by her mom after being swept out to sea.We assisted to take the child, suffering non-fatal drowning symptoms, from the beach to the roadway where an EC Government Health EMS ambulance was standing by and in the care of EMS paramedics she has been transported to hospital by EMS ambulance in a stable condition for observation for secondary drowning.GORDONS BAY:Alan Meiklejohn, NSRI Gordons Bay station commander, said:At approximately 10h30, Friday, 30th December, NSRI Gordons Bay duty crew investigated eye-witness reports of red distress flares sighted in the vicinity of Steenbras Point.One flare was first sighted then later a second flare in the same vicinity was reported.We launched our sea rescue craft and during an extensive search which included our activation of a white illuminating flare no sign of any persons or craft were found to be in any difficulties and at 02h30 the search was suspended.By Saturday morning with still no persons reported overdue or missing the flare activation remains a mystery.PORT ELIZABETH:On Saturday morning, 31st December, 7 seal pups were returned to Black Rock Island in the care of Dr. Greg Hofmeyr, curator of Marine Mammals at Bayworld and local Head of the Marine Animal Stranding Network, aboard the sea rescue craft Eikos Rescuer IV.Dr. Hofmeyr said that the pups, born in around November and early December, had come ashore at Canon Rocks, on the mainland, and not being good swimmers at that young age they are suspected of being swept off Black Rock Island and coming ashore during the storm and big swells on the 24th December.They had been rescued by volunteers along the coastline and they had spent these past few days in the care of Bayworld and we appealed to NSRI Port Elizabeth to assist us to ferry them back to the Island today, said Dr Hofmeyr.They were safely returned to the Island this morning and we are confident that they will naturally reunite with their moms.By February they will be better swimmers and with the weather conditions predicted we don’t expect them to wash ashore to mainland again before then, said Dr Hofmeyr.Picture attached: By NSRI Port Elizabeth. One of the seal pups being returned to Black Rock Island. Picture attached: By NSRI Port Elizabeth. One of the seal pups being returned to Black Rock Island.SHELLY BEACH:Antoinette Le Roux, NSRI Shelly Beach deputy station commander, said:At 12h31, Saturday, 31st December, NSRI Shelly Beach duty crew launched the sea rescue craft Caltex Challenger to assist the ski-boat Lucky Sands experiencing motor mechanical problems.We ferried a mechanic and a skipper to the boat and then in relays we ferried 9 crew safely to shore (8 men and a woman).We also took a spare motor propellor out to Lucky Sands during one of the relay ferry trips.Lucky Sands then came ashore under her own power and no further assistance was required.WILDERNESS:Torsten Henschel, NSRI Wilderness rescue swimmer, said:At 11h45, Saturday, 31st December, NSRI Wilderness duty crew responded to the Eastern side of the Keimans River Mouth following reports of a drowning in progress.NSRI rescue swimmers responded directly to the scene and our sea rescue craft Die Swart Tobie was launched and the SA Police Services responded.On arrival on the scene we found a 22 year old woman from Piet Retief was being assisted ashore by her brother and an unidentified bystander after she had been swept out to sea by rip currents and her brother and the bystander had gone into the surf to assist her.The young woman was not injured and no further assistance was required.PLETTENBERG BAY:Marc Rodgers, NSRI Plettenberg Bay station commander, said:At 10h10, Saturday, 31st December, 2 people went overboard a boat in the Keurbooms River Mouth.The sea rescue craft Airlink Rescuer and Ray Farnham were launched and while responding to the scene the skipper of the casualty boat had managed to turn his boat around and he had rescued both of the people who had fallen out of his boat safely and requiring no further assistance he had gone back to shore and no one was injured.The skipper of the casualty boat, Danny Farnham, is the brother of the ex NSRI Plettenberg Bay station commander, the late Ray Farnham, and Danny was extremely happy to see the sea rescue craft, Ray Farnham (named after his late brother) coming to assist him.KOMMETJIE:Ian Klopper, NSRI Kommetjie station commander, said:At 12h33, Saturday, 31st December, we responded to Witsands Beach following reports of a woman injured after reportedly tripping over one of her two Alsatian dogs while walking on the beach.On arrival on the scene our NSRI medics treated a 30 year old local woman for a dislocated knee and stabilised her on the scene.CMR (Cape Medical Response) ambulance services were summoned.We transported her to the roadway from the beach in our sea rescue 4x4 vehicle to an awaiting ambulance and she has been transported to hospital by CMR ambulance in a stable condition.Her two dogs displayed extreme concern for her wellbeing while we were treating her on the beach.
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6 fatal drownings and multiple other incidents around the coast

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