Marc Rodgers, NSRI Plettenberg Bay station commander, said:
At 16h30, Wednesday, 30th May, NSRI Plettenberg Bay duty crew were alerted by WSAR (Wilderness Search and Rescue) following reports of a 41 year old local angler injured from a fall on the coastline while fishing on the coastline on the Otter Trail, half way between Natures Valley and the Storms River Mouth.
SA National Parks (SAN Parks) rangers were en route hiking to the barely accessible area and WSAR, NSRI, MCSA (Mountain Club of South Africa) Garden Route Division, WC Government Health EMS Rescue and ER24 ambulance services were placed on alert.
On SAN Parks rangers arriving on the scene and confirming that the best access was from the sea side and that the patient was seriously injured following a fall from rocks into shallow sea surf below the rocks our NSRI Plettenberg Bay duty crew launched the sea rescue craft Leonard Smith and Free Runner accompanied by an ER24 rescue paramedic and MCSA Garden Route Division members.
On arrival on the scene, with nightfall already descended and no moonlight, in rough sea conditions with breaking rough surf along the barely accessible rocks, 2 NSRI rescue swimmers, Bruce Noble and Wayne Craig, were taken towards the shore on our wave rider Free Runner and both were deployed into the surf and they swam ashore.
Illuminating flares were used to assist to light up the scene to guide them swimming ashore along the jagged cliff shoreline and due to rough seas and the breaking surf we could only get them to 200 meters from the shoreline and they then swam the 200 meters through rough 3 meter breaking surf to get to shore.
On reaching the patient they found him to be in a serious condition with a compound fractured Tibula and Fibula and an arm and a head injury.
Our rescue swimmers provided medical care to the patient who was stabilised and it was determined that in the rough seas a patient transfer to our sea rescue craft using our floating stretcher, due to the extent of the injuries, was not feasible and the WC Government Health EMS rescue squad and WSAR members were summoned and they hiked to the location from the land side.
On the arrival of Metro EMS Rescue and WSAR paramedics took over medical care of the patient and our 2 NSRI rescue swimmers hiked out of the location together with the SAN Park rangers.
Our sea rescue craft returned to base.
The EMS rescue squad and the WSAR members set up camp and stayed with the patient during the night, continuing with medical care throughout the night, and this morning, Thursday, 31st May, the EMS/AMS Skymed rescue helicopter hoisted the patient into the helicopter and the patient has been airlifted to hospital in a serious but stable condition.
Dewald Pretorius, NSRI Wilderness duty controller, said:
At 12h00, Wednesday, 30th May, NSRI Wilderness duty crew were activated following reports from members of the public suspecting a surfer to be in difficulty off-shore of Leentjies Klip, Wilderness.
NSRI Wilderness dispatched rescue swimmers to the scene while preparing to launch a sea rescue craft.
WC Government Health EMS were placed on alert.
On arrival on the scene, the surfer, a Brazilian man, was found to have managed to reach the shore and he was found safe on the beach and not injured and he required no assistance.
It appears that he had been far out in the surfline raising concerns and NSRI commend the public for being alert.
Jean Le Roux, NSRI Hermanus duty coxswain, said:
At 09h45, Thursday, 31st May, NSRI Hermanus duty crew were activated following eye-witness reports made to the Police of a capsized rubber-duck adrift off-shore of Gansbaai.
The sea rescue craft Jaytee III was launched and on arrival on the scene, following a brief search, a capsized 4.2 meter rubber duck was located adrift at sea in rough sea conditions.
No persons were found at the location and a search commenced for any persons in the vicinity but no sign of any person could be found.
We towed the rubber duck to Gansbaai where Police took over care of the craft and they are investigating if this is the same craft of two fishermen who are confirmed to be missing since Sunday night.
NSRI continued a search in the area but no sign of missing persons has been found and Police are continuing investigations.
TO REPORT A SEA RESCUE EMERGENCY DIAL 112 FROM A CELLPHONE