At 11h34, Monday, 20 March, NSRI Melkbosstrand duty crew, ER24 ambulance services and Community Medics were activated following reports of a man collapsed on the Melkbosstrand Main Beach. Bystanders initiated bystander CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) efforts.
On arrival on the scene it was found that the 59 year old man had been surfing earlier and after returning to the beach he had suffered a suspected heart attack. Paramedics continued with extensive CPR efforts but after all efforts were exhausted the man has sadly been declared deceased. Our condolences to his family.
SOUTH COAST – KZN:
NSRI are appealing to the public to not set off Sky Lanterns. Sky Lanterns are made of paper and a wire frame with a candle. Once the candle is alight they are released and they fly through the air until the candle burns out. From a distance Sky Lanterns flying through the air give the same impression as red distress flares and the public then alert our rescue teams to activate a search.
At around 20h30, Monday, 20th March, NSRI Durban and NSRI Shelly Beach duty crews were placed on alert following multiple eye-witness reports, along the KZN South Coast coastline, between Southbroom and Southport, of what was believed to be multiple distress flares being activated from deep sea and some reports suggested red distress flares activated from behind the back breakers at Southport.
A full-scale search and rescue operation was prepared involving NSRI Durban, NSRI Shelly Beach, the SA Police Services, NSRI spotters, MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre), Telkom Maritime Radio Services, the Transnet National Ports Authority and ships at sea in the area at the time.
Investigations then led NSRI controllers to suspect that they may have been Sky Lanterns but the situation continued to be monitored throughout the night until it was confirmed that no vessels were in distress at sea.
NSRI, Maritime Authorities and Emergency Services cannot ignore suspicions of red distress flares around the coast and even after these suspicions lead us to suspect that the sightings may have been sky lanterns we are forced to continue to deploy resources and investigate all possibilities until it can be absolutely confirmed that no persons are in distress and NSRI appeal to the public to be aware that sky lanterns look like red distress flares and sky lanterns should not be used.
Dorian Robertson, NSRI Richards Bay station commander, said:
At 17h48, Tuesday, 21st March, NSRI Richards Bay duty crew were activated following reports of a drowning in progress at The Palm Beach, Alkantstrand.
The sea rescue craft Spirit of Round Table II was launched while NSRI rescue swimmers and our sea rescue vehicle responded directly to the scene.
On arrival on the scene Meditrax ambulance services were already in attendance and reported 2 men in distress being swept out to sea by rip-currents.
NSRI rescue swimmers swam out through the surf-line and were able to rescue a man from the water and on getting the man to the beach extensive CPR efforts by paramedics were unsuccessful and sadly the man was declared deceased.
An extensive sea and shoreline search has revealed no sign of the second man and a Police Dive Unit and Police Borderline unit will continue with an ongoing search operation.
The missing man is believed to be from India and working in South Africa and the deceased man, also from India, has South African Citizenship. They are believed to be aged in their 30’s.
Police assisted the families and NSRI and Emergency Services have conveyed heartfelt condolences.
Police have opened an inquest docket and the body of the deceased man has been taken into the care of the Forensic Pathology Services.
NSRI are appealing to boaters and anyone launching any kind of craft to go to sea to download the NSRI free phone application RSA SafeTrx from the NSRI web page
NSRI are also appealing to boaters and anyone launching any kind of craft to go to sea to let a responsible person know your launch time, your route and your return time, stick to the plan and let the responsible person know of your safe return.
On Tuesday morning at around 11am NSRI Simons Town investigated a craft with 2 men onboard. They had departed at 11a.m. on Monday to go fishing off Cape Point. At 11a.m. on Tuesday they still weren’t back from fishing and family understandably grew concerned and raised the alarm although there was no indication of when they were planning to come back from fishing or where they had gone fishing.
On investigation Ski-Boat Mobile located them by VHF radio and they were safe off Cape Point and fishing and no response was required but all agree that a solid plan in place including their launch time, plan of action and where they intended to be fishing, and a return time would have given family peace of mind.
The NSRI’s RSA SafeTrx loaded into their phones and plans and routes updated would have given family peace of mind.
Andrew de Kock, NSRI Kommetjie duty controller, said:
At 15h54, Tuesday, 21st March, NSRI Kommetjie duty crew were activated and NSRI Hout Bay were placed on alert after an NSRI RSA SafeTrx phone application indicated that an overdue boat was currently positioned deep sea off-shore of Kommetjie and although no emergency had been declared their being overdue raised concerns.
Ski-boat Mobile were able to raise the boat by VHF radio and they confirmed that they were safe and that they would update their route plan on the RSA SafeTrx phone application to reflect a new plan of action.
It appears that good sea conditions had altered their original plans and they had not yet updated the new plan on the phone “app” causing an Overdue Signal to send Maritime Rescue Authorities an alert.
TO REPORT A SEA RESCUE EMERGENCY DIAL 112 FROM A CELLPHONE