At the end of June, we trialed our first full-time rescue course for sea going crew. The course was hosted at NSRI Still Bay and applications were open to the public as part of a recruitment drive to help boost crew numbers for stations in the area.
Of the 10 candidates – 3 were trainee crew from Station 15 Mossel Bay, 2 were trainees from Still Bay, 1 was a new trainee from Witsand.
Three months down the line, we are proud to report that 9 out of the 10 are all still active in Sea Rescue at their respective stations.
The aim of the course was to present all the required modules and expose them to the sea time that a crew member needs, in order to qualify. The course objective was to test a full-time course, with two instructors, to make sure that the participants are given the attention and time needed to complete all the work. The idea was to get all the theory done in the mornings, followed by practical training sessions in the afternoon and evening. Sea time included scenario training and time at the helm. The schedule was planned with some flexibility around the weather to ensure that the new recruits had time to adjust to their new environment and to find their sea legs.
Station Commanders Arrie Combrinck (Still Bay), Martin Fourie (Witsand) and Andre Fraser (Mossel Bay) have all given very positive feedback on the trainees and the sound foundation they now have to work from.
The graduates of this course still need to complete the local requirements of their respective stations and, as soon as that has been met, they will be appointed by their stations as rescue crew.
We wish them all the best with their training and look forward to seeing their progression in the organization.
The next course will be hosted in Lamberts Bay in October as part of their recruitment drive. Details to follow.