At 16h45, Saturday, 18th March, NSRI Richards Bay duty crew were alerted by Isimangaliso Wetland Park ranger Sam van Zyl of 4 men on the boat Riempies capsized off-shore of Mabibi, at 9 Miles.
Isimangaliso Wetland Park rangers responded and a private dive charter company, Adventure Divers,on their boat Mnandi, responded.
Mnandi’s skipper Christo van Jaarsveld and crewman PD Goosen took the men onboard their boat and 3 were taken ashore and the skipper remained behind and the casualty boat was towed towards shore before the towline was released at the backline and the casualty boat drifted ashore.
No one was injured and NSRI Richards Bay were notified that no further assistance was required.
NSRI commend the Dive Charter company and Wetland Park rangers for their assistance.
At 16h25 NSRI were alerted by a lady reporting that her husband, on a motor boat with a friend, had launched from the Oceana Power Boat Club (OPBC) earlier in the day to go to Clifton and she had been alerted by an SMS that there was an emergency but she could not reach her husband by phone to determine what the emergency was and she was concerned.
TNPA (Transnet National Ports Authority) were alerted and attempts to raise the boat by VHF radio and cellphone were unsuccessful and NSRI Bakoven were alerted to assist with the investigation.
OPBC were contacted and it was confirmed that members of OPBC had witnessed the boat launching at OPBC and going to sea earlier in the day.
Howard Godfrey (Honorary Life Governor of NSRI) contacted private boats, on day pleasure cruises between OPBC and Clifton, to be on the look-out while members of OPBC and off duty NSRI members who were at OPBC at the time investigated and during the investigations the boat was sighted off-shore of Granger Bay in no difficulty and no NSRI response was required.
Later the boat came ashore at OPBC where it was confirmed that an emergency cellphone application on the skippers phone had accidentally been activated of which the skipper was not aware while they were at sea between Granger Bay and Clifton.
Clint Abrahams, NSRI Strandfontein deputy station commander, said:
At 18h30, Sunday, 19th March, NSRI Strandfontein were activated following reports of a drowning in progress at Monwabisi Beach.
NSRI Strandfontein, Marine Law Enforcement, Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services and their Fire Dive Unit and the SA Police Services responded to join lifeguards on the scene where it was confirmed that lifeguards had rescued one person, a local adult man, from the water who was not injured but an adult male, a local man believed to be aged in his late 20’s or early 30’s, had disappeared under water.
An extensive search has revealed no sign of the man and the Police Dive Unit and a Fire Dive Unit will continue an ongoing search operation.
Police have opened an investigation.
TO REPORT A SEA RESCUE EMERGENCY DIAL 112 FROM A CELLPHONE